Devastating earthquake strikes Italy

Sarah Ierino, Staff Writer

On August 24, 2016, a magnitude 6.2 earthquake wreaked havoc in Central Italy, leaving at least 247 people dead, and many missing.

In the middle of the night, the 2,000 residents of a small town called Amatrice were jolted awake from the severe earthquake that would take the lives of many. No one could ever prepare themselves enough for the destruction and heartbreak that would soon ensue when the terrible quake died down.

According to CNN, just the aftershock alone was felt in Rome which was 100 miles away from the root of the earthquake.

Buildings evolved into piles of rubble with no remains left to salvage. Even the brick and concrete houses were collapsed, some with people still trapped inside. Efforts were made to rescue as many people alive as they could.

In the town center of Amatrice, where the clock tower stands, the structure is currently still standing. While many buildings perished, the tower remained untouched and is almost seen as a glimmer of hope in the eyes of the people of Italy.

While some people remain hopeful and happy to be alive, others make negative comments regarding the situation and composure of their world around them. Amatrice’s mayor said, “the town is no more.” This is not exactly words of wisdom mourning town expects from their mayor.

Dangerous buildings that were half standing were torn down by firefighters. Outside is full of noise from motorcycles carrying supplies to the crashing of buildings that echo through the streets.

The sights seen among the rubble is truly frightening. The magnitude of the earthquake was enough to surface coffins from under the ground. The cemetery of Sant’Angelo has been defaced leaving the damaged, dirty, coffins out in the open for everyone to see. 

The American Red Cross Association has put forth a lot of time and effort into helping the survivors. In Amatrice, there is a field kitchen set up where the emergency workers provide meals to anyone and everyone affected. There are also emergency hospital camps set up to treat earthquake victims.

Rescue parties have been searching for days throughout the rubble, keeping an eye out for anyone stuck amid the mess. Building by building more people are found, along with more victims.

Italy has a long list of earthquake occurrences, the latest one being in 2009. This earthquake is no stranger to the Italian people.

Despite the tragedy of the severe earthquake, Italy has pulled themselves together as a whole to heal the wound of the lost.