Berkeley balcony victims were enthusiastic students

AP News
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Posted: Jun 17, 2015 1:21 AM
Berkeley balcony victims were enthusiastic students

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Most came from colleges around Dublin, and some worked at San Francisco's waterfront restaurants, where their enthusiasm quickly impressed those around them.

The six people who died when a fifth-floor balcony collapsed in Berkeley Tuesday were all typical students excited to be on a summer adventure in the U.S.

They were identified as Ashley Donohoe, 22, of Rohnert Park, California, and Ireland's Olivia Burke, Eimear Walsh, Eoghan Culligan, Niccolai Schuster and Lorcan Miller, all 21.

Walsh and Burke had been hired at the beginning of June to work as hostesses at Haza Zen, a Japanese restaurant at Pier 39, said restaurant owner Alvin Louie.

Walsh so impressed her managers with her enthusiasm and with how quickly she built rapport with customers that she had already been promoted to waitressing. She worked her first day as a server on Monday, Louie said.

"They were great young kids, very enthusiastic, full of energy," he said. "We're all devastated."

Donohoe, 21, a dual Irish-U.S. citizen, was fondly remembered by her high school vice principal in Rohnert Park, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

"Ashley was loved by her peers. She was definitely a leader," said Josh Wilson, vice principal of Rancho Cotate High School, where Donohoe graduated in 2011.