2015-04-08 / Features

Elmhurst Man ID’ed As Village Blast Victim


The city Medical Examiner’s Office last week identified a 27-year-old Elmhurst man as the second victim pulled from the rubble following a March 26 gas explosion in the East Village that leveled one building and severely damaged several others.

Moises Locon, who worked as a busboy at the Sushi Park Restaurant at 121 2nd Avenue in Manhattan, was positively identified on April 1, through DNA samples provided to the city Medical Examiner’s office, authorities said.

Firefighters pulled Locon’s remains from the rubble on March 29, just hours after the remains of Nelson Figueroa, 28, were recovered at the scene. Both men had been missing since the blast tore through the sushi restaurant.

Figueroa was paying his lunch tab at the rear of the restaurant and Locon was working in the basement when the blast occurred, authorities said.

Locon came to the United States seven years ago from his native Guatemala and settled in Elmhurst, his roommate said. He was saving his money to return to Guatemala, where he planned to move with his longtime girlfriend. He was also regularly sending money to his family in Guatemala, his roommate said.

Fire marshals are eyeing an incorrectly tapped gas line in the basement of the restaurant as the cause of the blast. The building was undergoing renovations that were shut down by Con Edison inspectors just two hours before the blast that injured 25 people, including five firefighters.

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