Delivery of the parchments for the new Righteous at the Virtual Garden

Ceremony 2021 at Monte Stella in Milan

On March 5 - on the occasion of the Day of the Righteous 2021 - the ceremony for the delivery of the parchments for the new Righteous honoured at the Virtual Garden "Righteous of Monte Stella" was held in Milan. At this link you can see their trees in the Virtual Garden in the Monte Stella area and all their biographies:

The "Righteous of Monte Stella" Virtual Garden, hosted on Gariwo website, was born in 2017 to include increasingly reports and testimonies on forgotten or still unknown figures. The virtual space reproduces that of Monte Stella, precisely to underline the complementarity of the two places. 

Senator Liliana Segre partecipate in the ceremony, she has proposed one of the candidacy of the honoured Righteous.

Below are the texts of the parchments for the honoured Righteous:

Eugenio Damiani

Anti-fascist, together with his family during the Second World War he transformed his house into a fundamental shelter for the opponents of the regime. Gold Medal for Memory, he was captured in Milan by the Republican police and was taken to Bolzano, where he died during the deportation.  

Alessandro Cofini

A citizen of Abruzzo, helped by his siblings Armando, Enrico and Giuseppina and his stepmother Berardina, he hosted the Jewish family Nathan in his home despite the constant risk of arrest and shooting, hiding the persecuted for two months and allowing them to escape deportation.

Giorgio Paglia and Maria Lucia Vandone (Cicci)

Anti-fascists, during the Second World War they generously committed themselves, at the risk of their own lives, in saving some Jewish children from persecution, hiding them in a house in Lanzo d’Intelvi and helping them, at night, to cross the border with Switzerland. Paglia, despite the promise of pardon, in order not to abandon his companions, was shot by the fascists, while Maria Lucia dedicated her entire life to common memories and ideals.

Maria Mascaretti

An official in the registry office of the Municipality of Voghera, she did her utmost to save numerous Jewish citizens, hiding them in her home and removing the corresponding tags from the registry file, saving as many individuals as possible from persecution and deportation.

Sopianac Family

Owners of an oil refinery near Zagreb, they used the company's premises as a safe place to hide Jews after the racial laws. Franjo Sopianac acquired work permits for young men and women, while his son Ivan and wife Lela, at risk of their lives, took care of the elderly and children, hiding them in the factory or in their own home.

Erich Eder

Commanding Officer of the Wehrmacht in Mombaroccio, on the hills of Pesaro, he became friends with Father Sante Raffaelli, a Franciscan friar who hid opponents and various Jewish families in his convent. Discovering the presence of the persecuted, Eder bravely decided to violate orders, refusing to report what was happening and solemnly pledging not to arrest the fugitives.

Maurizio Lazzaro deCastiglioni

Commander of the Pusteria Alpine Division, in 1943 he had his soldiers intervene for the release of Jewish prisoners held by the French police in Annecy and asked, with great determination, the French prefect of Isère to declare illegitimate the arrest of Jews of any nationality in the territory under Italian control, turning Grenoble and its region into a refuge for French and foreign Jews.

Susanna Aimo

Faithful and honest housekeeper of the Segre family since the early twentieth century, she remained at the service of the family even during the years of persecution against the Jews, despite the law forbidding it. Ready to put herself in danger for every member of the Segre family, she preserved their objects with devotion and respect during the deportation and then returned them to Liliana Segre at the end of the conflict.

5 March 2021

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