Louisiana woman among individuals missing in Florida condominium collapse
SURFSIDE, Florida - A woman from Louisiana is among the dozens of missing individuals first responders are searching for in the rubble of Florida's partially collapsed Champlain Towers South condo building, WWL-TV reports.
The 12-story residential building, located in the city of Surfside, is the site of an ongoing search and rescue operation since the building's partial collapse Thursday.
As of Saturday evening, 40-year-old Cassondra Billedeau-Stratton is reportedly one of 130 individuals who remain unaccounted for.
A Kenner native who is known to family and friends as 'Cassie' is an actress, model, and fitness instructor with a significant social media following, according to WWL-TV.
Stratton’s husband, Mike Stratton, is a well-known Democratic strategist and attorney in Denver.
He released a statement through his law firm, saying, “Thank you to everyone who has reached out and is keeping Cassie in their thoughts and prayers, but most of all to the brave men and women working around the clock in unimaginable conditions to bring her and others home. Our family is forever grateful. Cassie is a wife, mother and true friend to so many. She brings a vivacious love of life to everything she does—whether as an actress, model or Pilates instructor. Thank you again for your continued prayers.”
Stratton reportedly works in both Miami and New York and her blog, Chic Living 365, features information related to trends in fashion and life in Miami.
The Times-Picayune New Orleans Advocate reported that Stratton’s sisters and mother made it to Miami via private plane with help from Republican Whip Steve Scalise.
Scalise reportedly said, "The whole community is rallying behind Kerry and Cassie.”
Stratton’s sisters remain hopeful that their beloved sister will be located safely.
One of her sisters, Necole, explained what she bases her hope on, saying, “She is a strong, strong fighting warrior. We are still hopeful and know the fighting power of our God.”
At this point in the rescue efforts, a total of five people have been confirmed as dead.
But as officials mourn the loss of these individuals, they remain hopeful that rescue efforts will result in the discovery of survivors.
"We are working around the clock, and we have hope," Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said Friday night.
On Saturday evening, officials say 130 people are accounted for while 156 remain unaccounted for.
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