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Woman forgives fiancé´s murderers so “his sacrifice was worth something”

Fighting the mafia is a task some consider impossible; forgiving them an even more incredible feat. This is what Luciana Careri is doing. She was barely 21 years old when the 'Ndrangheta murdered Commander Carmine Tripodi, whom she was going to marry a few months later.

After the terrible tragedy on Feb. 6, 1985, she decided to move to Bologna. Having imagined a future with him, the memory of Carmine was too painful. She was surrounded by relatives, and in this new location she began her studies and deepened her faith. All this led her to a new life, after a hard period of grief and forgiveness.

“I didn't just pray. I began my studies in Religious Sciences and then, little-by-little with faith and with the help of my loved ones, I managed to alleviate the pain, without forgetting it. The memory is with me and always will be. His memory will always be with me, but now I see it from another perspective.”

He says Carmine knew what could happen to him if he continued his fight against organized crime. He was known by the mafia and imprisoned many of its members. This cost him his life.

Luciana explains that accepting that she would not be able to see, hug, or talk to her husband-to-be was the hardest moment of her life, and so she turned to God.

“I have continued with faith, and remember the forgiveness that God teaches us to practice. Only time helps to ease the memory and relieve the anger that remains within you and that consumes you. It a tragic story because it happened when we were very young. It was my youth and above all his. He sacrificed it for his brothers.”

She's married now and has three children. They all know Carmine, and his memory is very present in their lives. In the living room, they have a picture of him. Remember him as another part of their family. 

“They do this because it is right to remember him and above all to remember his values. They see him, not as a person who was important to me, but as a person who fought for the beliefs of the Italian people and because he died for others. It is a sacrifice that, hopefully, was worth something. At least, I hope so.”

Thirty-three years have passed since that tragic day that Luciana will never erase from her mind. She assures, with enough time, one can learn forgiveness and understand that it's the only escape from the dark tunnel of pain that one goes through after the death of a loved one.