Berkeley balcony collapse survivor Aoife Beary passes away, aged 27

Berkeley balcony collapse survivor Aoife Beary passes away, aged 27

ONE of the survivors of the 2015 Berkeley balcony collapse in California has passed away.

Aoife Beary, 27, survived the accident that claimed the lives of six Irish students when the fifth floor balcony they were standing on gave way in June 2015.

The Irish Times reports that Ms Beary, from Blackrock, Co. Dublin, died at Beaumont Hospital on Saturday, having suffered a stroke on Wednesday.

Ms Beary was one of seven people seriously injured in the shocking incident at the Library Gardens complex, which occurred when she and her friends were celebrating her 21st birthday.

She suffered a traumatic brain injury, underwent open heart surgery and sustained organ lacerations and broken bones.


Ms Beary had travelled to America with friends under the J-1 visa scheme.

Five of those who died had also travelled under the scheme – Niccolai Schuster, Eoghan Culligan, Lorcán Miller, Eimear Walsh and Olivia Burke, all aged 21.

Ms Burke's cousin, 22-year-old Irish-American citizen Ashley Donohoe of Rohnert Park, California, also died in the tragedy.

In 2016, Ms Beary testified at a California Senate hearing, which aimed to compel greater transparency of construction companies with negligent histories and impose stricter building standards.

Ms Beary told the hearing: "I miss my friends so much. I have known them since we started school together at four years of age. We had grown up together.

"Now my birthday will always be their anniversary."

Commentating on Ms Beary's death, Fine Gael Senator Barry Ward said: "Really very sorry to hear this news today.

"This tragedy has marred so many families forever.

"Sincerest sympathises to Aoife's family, Mike, Angela, Tim and Anna."