Crucifix Dedicated to Pope John Paul II Crashes to Death Italian Man Posing for Souvenir Photo

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By Vittorio Hernandez | April 25, 2014 8:54 AM EST

A 21-year-old Italian man literally bore his own cross to death when the 100-foot high crucifix in the mountain village of Cevo crushed him to death.

The victim, Marco Gusmini, was posing for a souvenir photograph with friends when the cross suddenly collapsed, reported The Telegraph. Ironically, the cross was dedicated to the late Pope John Paul II who will be canonised on Sunday, April 28, along with Pope John XXIII.

Reuters
A damaged crucifix overlooks the scene of a bomb explosion at St. Theresa Catholic Church at Madalla, Suleja, just outside Nigeria's capital Abuja, December 25, 2011.

The cross included as 20-foot high statue of Christ the Redeemer that weighed 600 kilogrammes. It was crafted by sculptor Enrico Job for the visit of the much-loved pontiff to Brescia in the Italian northern region of Lombardy in 1998. In 2006, it was transferred to Cevo.

The cross was bowed and bent downwards, held in place by steel cables.

Gusmini is from the town of Lovere, particularly a street named Via Papa Giovanni XXIII, who is also being canonised on Sunday.

According to Associated Press, in 2005, a 72-year-old woman was also crushed to her death by a 7-foot tall metal cross in Sant'Onofrio in Italy.

The canonisation rite is expected to draw millions of pilgrims to Vatican City, the seat of the Roman Catholic Church. Pope Francis would lead the Mass and the rite which starts at 9 am and is expected to end at noon.

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(Photo: Reuters / )
A damaged crucifix overlooks the scene of a bomb explosion at St. Theresa Catholic Church at Madalla, Suleja, just outside Nigeria's capital Abuja, December 25, 2011.
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