Three UC Berkeley students wounded, one missing in Nice attack

Three students on a study abroad program in France were wounded and another was missing in Thursday’s Bastille Day attack in Nice, the University of California, Berkeley, said on Friday.

The university identified the missing student as Nicolas Leslie, 20, one of 85 Berkeley students on a 15-day study abroad trip on entrepreneurship in Europe. Two of the other students suffered broken legs and a third had a broken foot, the university said. The injured students were not identified.

“May Nicolas Leslie be found safe,” the University of California’s flagship campus posted on Facebook Friday, along with the hashtag #PrayforNice and the image of a heart painted like the tri-color French flag.

A Texan and his 11-year-old son on a family vacation were also among at least 84 people killed when an attacker crashed a heavy truck through crowds celebrating Bastille Day in the French seaside city, officials said on Friday.

The Berkeley students were studying at a program affiliated with the international European Innovation Academy in Nice, the university said. The program was suspended temporarily as France marks three days of mourning, and students will be given the option of returning home early, the university said.

Study abroad administrators, students, consular officials and family members are searching for Leslie, a junior in the university’s College of Natural Resources, the university said.

“Our hearts go out to all of those impacted by the senseless violence that occurred yesterday in Nice, France,” Vice Chancellor Cathy Koshland and Associate Vice Chancellor and Dean of Students Joseph Defraine Greenwell said in a message to students.

In the attack, a man identified as Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel plowed into a crowd of some 30,000 local people and tourists attending a fireworks display to celebrate Bastille Day along the Mediterranean seashore.

At least 84 people were killed, 10 of them children, and 202 more were wounded.

French officials said Friday that Bouhlel, a 31-year-old Tunisian resident of Nice, was known to police for petty crime and violence including road rage, but had not been suspected of Islamist militancy.

In New York, site of the worst terrorist attack in U.S. history on Sept. 11, 2001, at the World Trade Center, Governor Andrew Cuomo ordered security tightened on mass transit and at airports, bridges, tunnels and other crucial transportation links following the attack in Nice.

(Reporting by Sharon Bernstein in Sacramento, California; Editing by Toni Reinhold and James Dalgleish)

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