UC Berkeley confirms death of student in Nice truck attack
A California university student who has been missing since Thursday’s Bastille Day attack in Nice is among those who died after a truck driver deliberately plowed through a crowd, killing at least 84 people, University of California, Berkeley, said on Sunday.
Nicolas Leslie, 20, was one of 85 Berkeley students on a 15-day study-abroad trip on entrepreneurship in Europe. Three other students were injured in the attack.
“This is tragic, devastating news,” UC Berkeley Chancellor Nicholas Dirks said in a statement released Sunday. “All of us in the UC Berkeley family — both here on campus, and around the world — are heartbroken to learn that another promising young student has been lost to senseless violence.”
Leslie was a junior in the university’s Natural Resources department who planned to go on to business school, Dirks said. He was one of 85 Berkeley students attending a 15-day course on European entrepreneurship and innovation held in Nice, the university said.
Of the three students who were wounded in the attack, two have been released after medical treatment. Vladyslav Kostiuk, 23 and Diane Huang, 20, continue to study at the program, the university said in the statement.
A third, Daryus Medora, 21, remains in the hospital, the university said.
Leslie’s death marks the second time in less than a month that a Berkeley student died in attacks by militants abroad. Two weeks ago, 18-year-old sophomore Tarishi Jain died when militants attacked a cafe in Dhaka, killing 20.
The radical Islamist group Islamic State has claimed the Nice attack, calling the driver, Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel, one of its soldiers. But authorities have yet to produce evidence that the 31-year-old had any actual links to the militant group.
Bouhlel was shot dead at the scene of the attack.
During a visit to Nice on Sunday, French Health Minister Marisol Touraine said 18 people, including a child, were still in a critical condition, while about 85 people in total were in hospital.
A Texan and his 11-year-old son on a family vacation were also among at least 84 people killed in the July 14 attack.
(Reporting by Sharon Bernstein in Sacramento, Calif.; Editing by Peter Cooney and Alan Crosby)