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The meeting of June 19, 2010

Honored by the presence of distinguished guests, who made a memorable day, last June 19, 2010 we remembered the Montegabbione battle of liberation from German occupation, fought by a British infantry regiment on June 16, 1944.

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This was the first public event organized by the Cultural Association "June 44".
Here is the program of the event.

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You can see here a video summary of the highlights of the initiative, starting from the morning ceremony at the British war cemetery in Orvieto.


Video index:
00:00 ceremony at the British war cemetery in Orvieto
00:36 Giovan Battista Tomassini and the Paglia river railroad bridge in Allerona
02:10 Alceo Mechelli, witness of the Paglia valley bombings
03:00 Conference on the Montegabbione battle
03:10 Paul Trickett (subtitled)
05:00 Harry Shindler
05:25 Gen. Franco Stella
07:22 Fabio Roncella

Ceremony in Orvieto

At the British war cemetery in Orvieto, there has been a military and religious ceremony to commemorate the fallen in the battle of June 16, 1944.

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the entrance to the British war cemetery in Orvieto

In the presence of several authorities, among which include Harry Shindler, representative in Italy of the "Italy Star Association", association of British veterans of the Italian campaign of World War II, a wreath has been laid at the graves of seven British soldiers fallen in Montegabbione that day.

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a moment of the ceremony

General Franco Stella, who is the president of the Bersaglieri Association in Umbria and commanded the military region of Umbria, has served as master of ceremonies.

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After the reading of psalms by a Catholic deacon and an Anglican priest, a brief speech by Harry Shindler concluded the ceremony, simple and moving.

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Incidentally, the Orvieto War Cemetery (click here for informations) contains 190 Commonwealth fallen, and is a beautiful place that deserves a visit; GPS coordinates are: Latitude 42.726389, Longitude 12.150000.

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A TG3 troupe has shown the ceremony, and the talented Paolo Raffaelli has done several interviews.
Here is the report in the afternoon edition of TGR Umbria (RAI television regional news):



And here is the report in the evening edition:



For the meaning of red poppies included in the composition of the wreath, let's remember here that throughout the Commonwealth these flowers represent the memory of the fallen in battle; for a discussion click here.

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The conference in Montegabbione

At the conference held in the afternoon in Montegabbione attended Harry Shindler, Gen. Franco Stella, and Fabio Roncella of the "June 44" Association. The final address was by Andrea Ricci, Mayor of Montegabbione.

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from the left: Fabio Roncella, Harry Shindler, Franco Stella

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Other guests have further enriched the event; among them Marco Patucchi, "La Repubblica" journalist, Paul Trickett, British tour operator (click here to visit the website) specializing in tours to the battlefields of the two world wars (the video interview is subtitled), Giovan Battista Tomassini, expert in local history, and Alceo Mechelli, valuable eyewitness to a serious war event.

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clockwise: Alceo Mechelli, Giovan Battista Tomassini, Paul Trickett, Andrea Ricci

Here, extracted from the full video, the intervention of Harry Shindler appreciating the contribution of the Italian partisans in the liberation war. This is an important lesson to be retained and repeated.




Below, finally, the full video (about 90 minutes) of the conference.

Index:
00:00 Presentation of the conference
02:05 Harry Shindler
16:15 Fabio Roncella
20:40 Gen. Franco Stella
57:40 Fabio Roncella


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Harry Shindler, before taking leave of us for a long return trip, has not failed to entertain nicely, again, with some of those present.

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Ceremony in Montegabbione

The conference has been followed by a ceremony in Piazza della LibertÓ (Freedom Square) to remember the victims of all wars. A wreath has been laid at the war memorial, with the Filarmonica Santa Cecilia performing "il Piave" and English and Italian national hymns.

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All videos in this section are the result of a nice work by the talented Luca Filippetti; photographs by Corrado Rossi.

Special thanks go to the Carabinieri Station Command, the City Council and the Pro Loco of Montegabbione, for the support and active participation in the initiative.

We look forward to meet all of you in Montegabbione on 18 June 2011! Do not miss it!



"Giugno 44" Cultural Association

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