Mystery surrounds Berkeley couple’s death

A Berkeley couple who were found dead in their apartment on Monday afternoon were identified Tuesday, but what killed them remains a mystery.

Berkeley police spokesman Officer Byron White said 35-year-old Roger Morash and his wife, 32-year-old Valerie Morash, were found dead together in their apartment in the 3000 block of Deakin Street. The couple’s two cats were dead as well.

No cause of death was immediately clear. Police evacuated the apartment building and called in PG&E and the fire department’s hazardous materials team to look for a gas leak or some other hazard but no contaminant was found.

Police don’t suspect foul play but still haven’t determined what killed the couple. A report from the Alameda County coroner’s bureau could take weeks.

White said:

“Until we get the coroner’s report, we really won’t know what caused their deaths. … It truly is a mystery at this point.”

Roger Morash was a game developer working on an adventure game called Shard. Valerie Morash was a postdoctoral research fellow at the Smith-Kettlewell Eye Research Institute in San Francisco.

They both attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.