By Karli Barnett

SURFSIDE (CBSMiami) — It was a solemn day in Surfside Tuesday, as the Guara family was laid to rest.

Loved ones gathered at St. Joseph Catholic Church, just across from where the Champlain Tower South building once stood, to say their goodbyes to Marcus “Marc” Guara, his wife Anaely “Ana” Rodriguez, and their daughters Lucia and Emma.

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The family was taken by tragedy when the condo building came crumbling down on June 24th.

“Who would’ve thought a few weeks ago that our community would have so many ties to one little building and one small corner of Florida called Surfside?” said Peter Milián, a cousin of Marcus, who spoke at the service.


Pallbearers carry the casket of Marcus Guara’s daughters before a funeral service for the family at St. Joseph Catholic Church, Tuesday, July 6, 2021, in Miami Beach, Fla. Guara, his wife Anaely, and daughters Lucia and Emma, died in the collapse of the Champlain Towers South condominium building in nearby Surfside. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

“It is not possible to express such beautiful souls. All words fall short,” said Digna Rodriguez, another speaker.

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Marcus was described as a loving father. He was athletic and loved paddle boarding and rowing.

Anaely was a devoted mother. She was a dancer and yogi who loved the beach.

Ten-year-old Lucia, or “Lulu bear” as Rodriguez called her, was a “child full of innocence and pure love.”

Regarding Lucia’s 4-year-old sister, Emma, Rodriguez said, “She enjoyed riding on her father’s back, cuddling with her mother, and being her sissy’s favorite person.”

They were all spirited fans of the University of Miami, where Marcus was on the rowing team. Milián played a voicemail on his phone he kept from when Lucia was young, singing “it’s great to be a Miami Hurricane!”

“I truly believe that God watched over them by not making them suffer without Lucia and Emma,” said Milián.

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The family is now at rest together.

Karli Barnett