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Two more bodies found on Italian cruise ship
Question of the Day
Passengers said they had not participated in an evacuation drill, although one had been scheduled for Saturday. The cruise began on Jan. 7.
Costa Crociera SpA, which is owned by the U.S.-based cruise giant Carnival Corp., defended the actions of its crew and said it was cooperating with the investigation. Carnival Corp. issued a statement expressing sympathy but did not address the allegations of delayed evacuation.
Some 300 of the crew members were Filipinos, and three of them were injured, the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs said.
The captain has insisted that the reef was not marked, but locals said the stretch of sea is not difficult to maneuver. Anello Fiorentino, captain of a ferry that runs between Giglio and the mainland, said he makes the crossing every day without encountering problems.
“Yes, if you get near the coast there are reefs, but this is a stretch of sea where all the ships can safely pass,” he said.
Islanders on Giglio opened up their homes and businesses to accommodate the sudden rush of survivors. Rossana Bafigi, who runs a newsstand, said she was really moved by the reaction of the passengers.
She showed a note left by one Italian family that said: “We want to repay you for the disturbance. Please call us, we took milk and biscuits for the children. Claudia.”
At Mass on Sunday morning in Giglio’s main church, which opened its doors to the evacuees Friday night, altar boys and girls brought up to the altar a life vest, a rope, a rescue helmet, a plastic tarp and some bread.
The Rev. Don Lorenzo, the parish priest, told the faithful that he wanted to make this admittedly “different” offering to God as a memory of what had transpired.
He said each one carried powerful symbolic meaning for what happened on Friday night: the bread that multiplied to feed the survivors, the rope that pulled people to safety, the life vest and helmet that protected them, and the plastic tarp that kept cold bodies warm.
“Our community, our island will never be the same,” he told the few dozen islanders gathered for Mass.
Frances D’Emilio contributed to this article from Rome.
By Matt Kibbe
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