Andres Levine
Andres Levine

Andres Levine has been described as a quiet, straight-shooting financial analyst who emigrated from Venezuela to Miami seven years ago. The 26-year-old was planning to be married in August.

Aways genuine and focused on the positive, Levine attended Colegio Moral y Luces Herzl-Bialik, a private Jewish high school in Caracas, along with his close friends Moises Rodan and Luis Sadovnik, who also lost their lives in the collapse of the Champlain Tower South in Surfside, Fla. Levine was identified as a victim on July 13.

“They all left Venezuela looking for a better future and better opportunities,” said his friend, Esther Beniflah Melul, who attended the same high school. “We’re all in shock,” she told The Miami Herald.

Melul said that the three were proud, religious Jews who were active in the strong Venezuelan Jewish community in the area.

“Andres would often visit his many friends on campus,” says Rabbi Berl Goldman, co-director of Chabad at the University of Florida in Gainesville. “You could see how truly close members of the Venezulian Jewish community are. They’re like family.”

“The Jewish community has been so supportive,” said Melul, explaining that the community has organized donations, prayer groups and psychological help for family and friends. “They care a lot. ... Some of these people don’t even know the victims.