Father of Two, Who Died in Surfside Collapse, Remembered in Vigil

Manuel LaFont, 54, lived in apartment 804.

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Through song and prayer, dozens filled the sanctuary of St. Patrick Catholic Church in Miami Beach, turning to their faith to get through tragedy.

On Tuesday evening, a mass was held in honor of Manuel LaFont, who lived on the eighth floor of the Champlain Towers.

The 54-year-old died in the collapse last Thursday. His body was recovered a day after.

"He was a nice guy. He was a good father, and I’m very sad. Very sad," said Luis Jamardo, a friend of LaFont.

LaFont lived in apartment 804. Known as "Manny" to loved ones, he was the father of two children and lived in the building for years. He is remembered by family members as being a strong human being.

"It’s very sad for everybody," said another friend, Ruben Etchverry.

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