Pope Laments Death of Italian Rescue Workers

BELLUNO, Italy, AUG. 28, 2009 (Zenit.org).- Benedict XVI prayed «for the repose of the souls of those who died tragically» in last Saturday’s helicopter accident on the slopes of Monte Cristallo, near the town of Cortina D’Ampezzo, in northern Italy.

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In a telegram, signed by cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, the Pope’s secretary of state, the Holy Father expressed his "profound sentiments of sympathy» to the families of the four individuals of the medical emergency services (SUEM), who died in the accident.
In his message, Benedict XVI recalled «with gratitude» the «diligent service SUEM 118 offered him during his stay in Lorenzago di Cadore in the summer of 2007,» reported Vatican Radio on Wednesday.
The telegram was read during the funeral services for the four victims in the cathedral of Belluno, which was presided over by the Bishop Giuseppe Andrich of Belluno-Feltre, to whom the telegram was addressed.
The victims are doctor Fabrizio Spaziani, pilot Dario De Felip, assistant pilot and member of the Alpine rescue group Marco Zago, and the group’s technician, Stefano Da Forno.
They died when their helicopter crashed in bad weather while flying above a landslide on the slopes of Monte Cristallo, over Cortina D’Ampezzo.

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