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New York truck attack: Victims were friends for decades

New York truck attack: Victims were friends for decades

From L to R: victims Alejandro Damian Pagnucco, Ariel Erlij and Hernan Ferrucci
Eight people were killed in New York on Tuesday when a man drove a truck onto a cycle path in Lower Manhattan. Not all the victims have been identified yet but the authorities have confirmed that five of them were from Argentina and one from Belgium. The victims who have been named are:
Diego Enrique Angelini
Ariel Erlij
Hernan Ferrucci
Hernan Diego Mendoza
Alejandro Damian Pagnucco
The trip to New York had been more than a year in the planning for the group of Argentine friends.They had all studied together at the same polytechnic college in the port city of Rosario, 300km up the Parana river from the capital, Buenos Aires. Their time at the General San Martin college with its demanding curriculum had created a strong bond between the students which persisted after they graduated in 1987.
At a school reunion last year, they decided to do something special to mark the 30th anniversary of their graduation, local media are reporting. One of the class of 1987, Martin Marro, was living near Boston in the United States so the idea came up to visit him.
Martin Marro was injured in the attack and is being treated in the Presbyterian Hospital for "non-life threatening injuries"
Mr Marro, 48, had been living in a suburb of Boston with his architect wife for some seven years, a local politician said.He works as a senior investigator for Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research in Cambridge, Massachusetts.A group of nine friends signed up to the trip which would also take them to New York.Seven of them flew out from Rosario to the US on the same plane on Saturday. Before boarding, they had their picture taken at the airport, all wearing the same white T-shirts with the slogan "Libre" (Free) emblazoned on it. Argentine daily La Nacion tweeted the photo.
Skip Twitter post by @LANACION
Quienes eran las cinco victimas argentinas del ataque terrorista en Nueva York https://t.co/a8mbYkQwiP pic.twitter.com/0VWRVEdq6p— LA NACION (@LANACION) November 1, 2017
Report
End of Twitter post by @LANACION
Ariel Erlij could not fly out with the group that day because he had to attend to some business but he saw them off at the airport.
Ariel Erlij was one of the five Argentines killed in the attack
A successful businessman who owned the steel firm Ivanar in Rosario, Mr Erlij had paid for the trip for two of his former classmates who could not afford the costs.The 48-year-old, who lived in Funes, just outside of Rosario, and was married, flew out a day later to meet his friends.After spending a day with their friend in Boston, the group, including Mr Marro, flew to New York.On Tuesday, they decided to hire bicycles to tour Lower Manhattan. They were cycling two abreast along the West St-Houston St cycle path when a white pick-up truck mounted the path shortly after 15:00 local time (19:00 GMT).Surviving members of the group told Argentine daily Clarin that those cycling next to the street were killed, while those on the inside of the cycle path were knocked to the ground but fell onto grass and survived.
What we know and don't
What witnesses saw and heard
The Argentine consul in New York, Mateo Estreme, told Clarin that the survivors were in shock and that they did not immediately know what had happened to their friends.It was not until later that day that they were told that five of their friends had died. Among the five who died was Hernan Ferrucci.
Hernan Ferrucci had travelled to New York with his friends
Mr Ferrucci had studied at the National University in Rosario after graduating from General San Martin college. He became an architect and had worked on a project building condominiums in an upscale area of Rosario, local media reported.Diego Angelini also became an architect after his studies at General San Martin.
Diego Angelini was among the friends who went cycling in Lower Manhattan
Mr Angelini had his own architecture studio in the centre of Rosario. Alejandro Damian Pagnucco was another one of the group of friends who did not survive the attack.
Alejandro Damian Pagnucco was also killed in the attack
He was 49 and lived in Funes, the same small city outside of Rosario where Ariel Erlij also lived.Hernan Diego Mendoza also became an architect after graduating from college. According to his Facebook profile, he had worked most recently at Duendes Rugby Club in Rosario.The city of Rosario has declared three days of mourning for the five Argentine victims.While officials have confirmed that another of the victims was a Belgian woman who had travelled to New York with her mother and sister, the two remaining victims have not yet been officially identified.
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