Disasters & Accidents

Mourners farewell Giovanny, youngest victim of Mexico City metro disaster

Mexico City, May 5 (EFE).- A 13-year-old boy who died in the collapse of the Mexico City metro overpass was farewelled by family and friends in an emotional funeral on Wednesday.

The wake took place inside the family home in the south of the capital, where the small white coffin was displayed along with white flowers and a photo of a smiling Giovanny.

His relatives remembered him as a happy boy who liked soccer and wanted to learn how to cook tacos.

Giovanny is the only minor in the 25 fatalities of the accident, due to which 38 people are still hospitalized and three days of official mourning have been declared.

The tragedy occurred on Monday night when a beam of an elevated section of Line 12, between Olivos and Tezonco stations in the southeast of the capital, gave way, causing the train carriages to dangle in a V shape.

The case of Giovanny, who was traveling with his mother’s partner, was emblematic, since his mother and his grandmother were looking for him all night among the debris of the accident and in the hospitals of the city.

Although they found the partner in a hospital, they failed to find any trace of Giovanny, so the Attorney General’s Office issued a search alert until his body was identified in the morgue on Tuesday night.

Dozens of relatives and neighbors were at the wake, during which Giovanny’s mother rushed over to the coffin, crying and shouting: “My son, don’t go.”

Loved ones gave him a final applause, sang to him and, shouting “justice,” walked the coffin to the hearse bound for the San Lorenzo Tezonco cemetery, where he was buried.

This cemetery is located near where Giovanny lost his life when he returned that tragic night with his mother’s partner from the restaurant where he helped wash dishes.

He called his mother just two stations from the site of the accident, telling her that he was almost home. On television they learned that a train had crashed and the almost 24-hour search for him began.

“It was very painful when his mother told me that he was dead. I couldn’t believe it. I still had hope of finding him in a hospital, but unfortunately I found him dead,” Pedro Hernández, Giovanny’s father, told reporters.

With his voice cracking, he demanded that “this be resolved and justice done.”

Line 12 of the metro, inaugurated in 2012 as the great project of then-mayor and current foreign secretary, Marcelo Ebrard, has been embroiled in controversy from the start.

The project cost much more than was promised and between 2014 and 2015 part of its operations were suspended due to numerous safety issues.

In addition, residents had reported damage to the overpass after a powerful earthquake on Sep. 19, 2017.

Mexico City mayor Claudia Sheinbaum announced that a Norwegian company will carry out an independent investigation into what happened in the greatest tragedy in the city since the earthquake. EFE


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