Friday 9 December 2016

For a whole generation of J1 students, life will never be the same again

Gerard O'Regan

Published 20/06/2015 | 02:30

Lorcán Miller, one of the students who was killed in the Berkeley balcony collapse tragedy
Lorcán Miller, one of the students who was killed in the Berkeley balcony collapse tragedy

The text from my son Rory came at an unlikely time - he wanted to assure us all was well with his group of Irish J1 students in their part of California. They are down in San Diego, but were becoming increasingly aware something terrible had happened further north in Berkeley.

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Social media was rapidly painting an unimaginable picture, about friends, and friends of friends. Some were dead. Others grievously injured.

A pall of disbelief and sadness had descended on the young Irish, enjoying what they thought would be a summer idyll in the Californian sunshine.

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