They were only 17 and 15 years old. Italian sisters Julia and Alicia Pisano were partying all night long. They called their father at dawn that they would be home soon. But the girls’ lives ended abruptly Sunday morning on the railway station Riccione, when they were kidnapped by a high-speed train.
Daddy Vittorio usually takes his daughters after they’ve gone dancing. But this time he wasn’t feeling well, so they took the train home for once. They called their father just before leaving with a reassuring message. But the drama that followed can hardly be described in words.
The hours and moments before the tragedy have been partially reconstructed. The sisters from Castinasso, near Bologna, went to the disco “Peter Pan” in Riccione on Saturday evening. Julia’s bag was stolen, and Alicia’s cell phone battery was empty. A boy lent his cell phone so the girls could call their father.
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The girls arrived at the station around 6.50 am on Sunday morning. At least five witnesses saw them approaching the platforms. What went through their minds after that? Julia was the first to cross the bars. Alicia sat on the podium, then joined her sister. “We keep yelling at them to get out of there,” witnesses said.
High-speed train driver Freccia Rossa was on his way to Milan and passed Riccione on the first track. Julia saw and slammed the brakes. Then Alicia appeared, too. Stopping the train in time was an impossible task. The girls were caught by Frecciarossa and dragged for hundreds of metres. The effect was enormous. The sisters died instantly. All this happened in the blink of an eye. Did Gyula see impending death and try to save her sister? These are questions the police are trying to answer. The hypothesis that they would have slipped is highly unlikely. It is not yet clear exactly what happened. The most likely hypothesis is that the sisters wanted to cross paths.
On the basis of the testimonies, the police will try to reconstruct the entire drama. After all, there are no pictures of the moments leading up to the terrible drama.
Father Vittorio is deeply saddened by the loss of his daughters. “It was my life,” he said. The girls’ mother hurried back to Castenaso. Just last December, she left her family to live in Romania again.
The mayor of Riccione, Daniela Angelini, was also affected. “On behalf of the entire Riccione community, I express my deep sadness at what happened at our station and my condolences to the families affected by this terrible tragedy,” she wrote in a statement.
“We received the assurance we never wanted: the two young sisters who were hit by a train in Riccione are unfortunately our compatriots. It is difficult to accept this tragedy. We feel immeasurable pain,” said Carlo Gibblini, the mayor of Castinaso. “The entire Castenaso community cares about parents, relatives and friends. Giulia And Alicia, you left us too soon.”
Julia and Alicia were not only sisters, but also best friends with each other. They were always together. Until that tragic moment at dawn in Riccione station.
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