MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Estelle Hedaya’s brother tells CBS4 News he takes comfort in knowing his sister was at “the apex at everything in her life.”
From her faith to her career, to her physical fitness, yet still not knowing when or if she’ll ever be identified is incredibly painful.READ MORE: ‘This Is Not Acceptable’: North Miami Councilwoman Upset Over Images Of Border Patrol Agents With Whips Chasing Down Haitian Migrants
“The waiting game is a little tough, it’s been a month now, it’s too much for my parents,” said Ikey Hedaya, brother of the only unidentified Surfside victim.
It is too much to bear for any family. Ikey Hedaya’s oldest sister, Estelle, has the dubious distinction of being the only remaining *unidentified* Surfside soul who died in the Champlain Towers collapse back on June 24th.
The names of 97 dead have been announced, with 54-year old Estelle should be 98.
“It’s not like you see on TV, CSI Miami. It’s a process,” said Hedaya.
Three days after the collapse, Hedaya traveled to Miami from Midwood Brooklyn to give his DNA. But nearly 4 weeks to the day later, there was still no match for Estelle, who is pictured here with her 75-year-old mother Linda. Incredibly, her brother said he was not bothered by being the last to find out about their loved one.
“It’s actually not difficult, it makes it even better, believe it or not, because it means God chose her,” said Hedaya.READ MORE: Florida Revised COVID-19 School Rule Short Circuits Legal Challenge By Five School Districts
Crediting his family’s powerful belief in God, good friends and dedicated first responders for remaining so calm in the middle of such an emotional storm.
Ikey, speaking to CBS4 the same day first responders officially ended the Surfside recovery effort, visiting the site one last time before being showered with a water salute.
“Providing closure to families was the ultimate test of everyone here. We did our best to do that, to make sure that everybody knew that we were in it 1000% to make sure they had the closure they needed,” said Asst. Chief Scott Dean, Leader of Task Force 2.
Closure, the Hedayas tell CBS4 they are patiently waiting for whether the news about Estelle’s identification comes in one day, one week, or one month.
No matter the amount of time it takes, they will be waiting for her.
“I know my sister is in the right place now. She went out on top, we’ll l be fine, and her soul will go straight up,” said Hedaya.MORE NEWS: Texas-Style Abortion Bill Filed In Florida
According to Jewish law, the Hedayas cannot have a funeral or sit shiva for Estelle until her remains are found, a true test of their faith.