Viareggio mourns the dead, three years on, with a statue of “L’Angelo del Soccorso”

Last night – three years to the day after Viareggio suffered a night of horror more than 10,000 people gathered to mourn the dead in a silent march that crossed the city.

The shocking tragedy has shaken Tuscany’s seaside resort town – and all of Italy.

On June 29th, 2009 at 11:48pm a tanker, containing pressurized GPL gas, riding on a train through town … exploded in a ball of fire that engulfed several city blocks. 32 people died, some instantly, some after weeks of agony. Despite calls for justice from the part of the citizens and the family members of the victims the investigation into who is responsible is just now closed. 32 people… (the number of indighted is coincidentally the same as the number of the victims…) have been named as bearing some responsibility for transporting the dangerous cargo unsafely… on unregulated transport.

Luigi Ferrari, one of the local firefighter and first-responders – and sculptor has produced a bronze statue one-and-ahalf meter high – “L’Angelo del Soccorso” (the Angel of Assistance) – the model for which was placed last night – temporarily – in front of the “Casina dei Ricordi” – the impromptu monument to the victims – which itself has been repeatedly robbed and  vandalized… 

A larger version of the statue of the Angel will be produced later this year by the Firefighter’s Association and donated to the city of Viareggio to commemorate this … and other tragedies that have befallen Italy in recent years.

The photo above, of the model, is from the Viareggino.com website.

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