Daniella Moffson, 21, an Orthodox college student from the Upper East Side, was among three Columbia University students who died in a bus crash Thursday morning in Honduras, where they had served as volunteers on a medical mission serving the poor.
Ms. Moffson was to fly home later the same day. She, and Olivia Varley Erhardt, 20, and Abigail Flanagan, 45, who also was a nurse practitioner at the school’s medical center, were killed when their bus, on the way to the airport, veered off a road and fell at least 260 feet into a ravine east of Tegucigalpa, the capital city. Twelve other Americans were injured in the accident.
“She was a very special person. Sweet. She wanted to help,” said Rabbi Elie Weinstock, spiritual leader at Kehilath Jeshurun where the Moffsons are members. “She had a very spiritual refinement that stood out.”
Ms. Moffson’s father, Michael, called his daughter “beautiful in and out” in an interview with The Daily News, and said Daniella planned to become a pediatrician. She was in Honduras with the university’s Medical Brigade program, a program of Global Brigades, a health and international development organization.
Ms. Moffson is survived, in addition to her father, by her mother, Sheera; a sister, Raquel; and a brother, Alex.
Columbia University President Lee Bollinger, said “This terrible and tragic loss is all the greater because these individuals were dedicating their passion and their very special talents to serving those in need.”