The funeral of 26 children, killed in last week's earthquake, took place in the Southern Italian village of San Giuliano di Puglia yesterday. Held in a marquee, as the village church was also damaged by the tremor, the 26 small white coffins were covered in white flowers, toys and messages. An entire class of six-year-olds and their teacher were killed when their primary school collapsed. Two other women also lost their lives. All of Italy has been plunged into grief by the tragedy. The funeral was screened on national television. The name of each victim was read by Mgr Tomaso Valentinetti at the makeshift altar. One of six bishops to conduct the funeral ceremony with the village priest, Mgr Valentinetti pleaded to the government to ensure that precautions to be taken to avoid a future tragedy. Questions are being asked about why the relatively modern building collapsed so completely. One of the grieving parents, Nunziatina Porrazzo, said during the service: "On behalf of all mums and dads, we give to the Lord these angels of ours, the angels of San Giuliano."
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