Danika Egland, known as the Anja das Favelas, or "Angel of the Favelas," was a Norwegian activist who gained immense popularity in Rio, Brazil, for her work bringing medicine, food, and money to the people of the city's favelas, including the notorious Cidade dos Anjos.
The daughter of a Norwegian diplomat, Egland preached education and independence for the oppressed. She was as distrusted by the leaders of the favelas as she was beloved by the residents, though they dared not touch her due to her status among the people and her powerful father.At the age of twenty-five, Egland's poise, courage and beauty caught the eye of a local importer-exporter named Adler. She was drawn to him and his plans of reshaping the favela, though she was careful to hide their relationship from her family, who already feared for her safety and disapproved of her work in the favelas. The young couple soon learned she was pregnant with Adler's child, and they were secretly wed.
As Adler's plans for a coup of Cidade dos Anjos neared completion, he was betrayed, and the favela's leader, a gangster known as The Fist, surrounded Adler's home while he was away and burned it to the ground. Danika and their unborn child were killed in the fire. Her death was avenged by a grief-stricken Adler, who single-handedly killed The Fist and his henchmen and took over leadership of the favela in a single night of violence that would forever be remembered by its people.
Adler's lieutenant would later say that Danika's goodness and brutal death redeemed her husband, changing his view of the world for the better. He had even attempted to make amends with his own family before he was killed while visiting the United States.