Finding of G. Marelli's body

On April 18th 1960, two brothers Ercole and Giuseppe Marelli, university students, and a friend of theirs were hunting ducks on Lake Trasimeno when their boat suddenly sank. There was no way out for the three boys: weighed down, they plunged to the bed of the lake without even being able to manage a few strokes.
The tragedy left the whole Italian nation in shock: because of the young age of the victims and because the Marelli family was well known, being involved in the manufacture of radios.
Fire fighter divers intervened in great numbers, together with Carabinieri divers, as the incident could have been of criminal relevance. Not long after, they found two bodies but they still could not find the corpse of Giuseppe Marelli. Tens of boats explored the bed of the lake dragging cables and grappling hooks by the stern. Petrified with pain and immobile on the pontoon of Monte del Lago, the father of the two victims, Engineer Fermo Marelli, watched, his heart torn by anguish and horror. On April 19th, the fire fighters, in agreement, decided to ask Ferraro to intervene in person. Ferraro rushed to the small village on the eastern coast of the Trasimeno. He jumped on a rubber dinghy with the Carabiniere diver Santamaria. The divers, who were connected to their support boats by a line, as required by safety procedures, searched the bed of the lake by touch little by little. At just over one hundred metres from the shore, at the exact point where the boat with the three young hunters sunk, seaweed formed a dense and intricate forest. Every few metres, divers were forced to remove the seaweed with their hand as it stuck to their mask. Ferraro's first suggestion was: "When you stop to remove the seaweed from the glass of your mask, move back one meter and feel all around with your hands: your support boat could drift from its course, if so you might just miss the right spot."
Then he decided to dive in, in person, together with the fire fighter diver.
And what he predicted occurred, exactly in the same way: as he stopped to remove the slushy seaweed from his mask, he found himself shifted off the course of his underwater itinerary. So he moved back a little, just one meter, and his sensitive fingers felt the unmistakable corduroy of the hunting trousers worn by Giuseppe Marelli. With the help of Santamaria, the dead body was freed from the weeds that concealed and enveloped it. Ferraro and the Carabiniere's gestures were delicate and pitiful. As they returned to land, with the body of the young man laying on his face at the bottom of the boat, Santamaria said: "If we didn't find him today, you would have kept us here until we found him... »
"That's right. Have you seen his dad's face? Would you have even thought about going? About leaving that man alone in his desperation?"
Still immobile on the pontoon, Engineer Fermo Marelli waited for the body of his second son, killed by the lake on Resurrection Day. He would never forget what Ferraro did: he wanted him to accept a material expression of his gratitude. He would send a trusted person to his house to insist, to convince him: "it is not about paying you, professor, do not mistake me... But the engineer would really like you to... " Ferraro is decisive and firm in his answer: "Tell Engineer Marelli that the tragedy he just went through was unimaginable. I have only done my duty. For me it is more than enough to be able to count on his friendship."
Since then and for many years to come, Fermo Marelli sent Luigi Ferraro a postcard with his greetings, each time he went travelling. (2)




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