On the day the photojournalist would have turned 38, the main hall of the University of Pavia was filled with the public including family members: greetings from the mayor and the local bishop
OSSIGENO 28thSeptember 2021–A full house, lots of emotion and lengthy applause of appreciation, on Monday evening 27thSeptember 2021 in the main hall of the University of Pavia, at the national preview screening of the documentary “Ciao Andy, a hug from Pavia” (see the trailer here) produced by Ossigeno per l’Informazione in collaboration with the “Volpi Scapigliate” association.
A tribute to the memory of the Pavia photojournalist killed in Donbass on the 24thMay 2014 while documenting the conditions of civilians involved in the conflict between Ukrainians and pro-Russian separatists.
At the beginning of the evening, the mayor of Pavia, Fabrizio Fracassi, visibly moved, conveyed the greetings on behalf of the city, saying: “Andy is a son of Pavia; he carried the name of the city around the world with great professionalism and courage. It is not easy to speak here this evening in front of the family, also because a definitive sentence is still missing. The full truth is still sought. Thanks to Ossigeno per l’Informazionefor this initiative “.
The bishop of Pavia, Monsignor Corrado Sanguineti, whilst unable to be present, sent a greeting and expressed his closeness to Andy’s family who attended in silence, surrounded by numerous friends and colleagues.
The director of Ossigeno per l’Informazione,in a video message, said, inter alia: “It’s nice that the memory of Andy is alive in society. This documentary by Ossigeno shows that seven years after his death more and more people know him and appreciate his extraordinary human and professional qualities. Andy didn’t have a long life, but he sowed a lot and his seeds keep sprouting. When a war reporter is killed we cannot get away with saying that he went to the wrong place, that it is his fault or that it is nobody’s fault. We want this not to happen again”.
Giacomo Bertoni, collaborator of Ossigeno per l’Informazione andmoderator of the presentation, introduced the event and recalled Andy Rocchelli’s career, saying: “You can’t talk about his work, his being a freelance photojournalist; yet, permanently engaged spiritually, without speaking of restlessness and freedom. Just think of the forgotten conflicts in Libya, Kyrgyzstan, and North Ossetia. Andy would be there to do what every journalist should do: immortalize, make a moment of history eternal, make sure that it is known to those who are not there and remembered tomorrow by those who live through it today “.
The last speech was that of Francesco Carante, representing the “Volpi Scapigliate”Association: “When the first degree trial began, we felt the need to create an association, to be a concrete sign in Pavia to support the family and to spread Andy’s message. In fact, he passed us a testimony and we are called upon to experience first-hand the search for truth, the support for press freedom and the defence of human rights. The trial has not yet ended but our commitment has only just begun”.
The documentary will be presented nationally by Ossigeno per l’Informazione in November, as part of the initiatives dedicated to International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists.