ITALY: Whirlpool of Grief

The sea was calm under the harsh Riviera sun. Eighty-two children crowded the small 30-ft. motor launch Annamaria as it pulled out from the little seashore town of Loana. With shrill chatter and singing, the children (aged ten to twelve) set forth with six women guardians and three crewmen for the isle of Gallinaria, six miles away.

Suddenly one of the crew shouted something to the helmsman, but his warning was drowned by the children's singing. The launch plowed into a rusty underwater steel pylon, placed there by the Germans as an anti-submarine obstacle. For a moment the launch's prow...

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