A cable car failure in the Alps killed all family members except Eitan Biran. His father’s final embrace saved him from the disaster that killed his dad, mom, and brother.
Tragedy struck the whole family of 5-year-old Eitan—he, his dad and mom, his younger brother, his parents, and his maternal great-grandparents were relishing a family event in Italy in the Western Alps mountainside.
The family are Israelis but currently reside in Northern Italy, where Amit Biran, Eitan’s dad, worked at a clinic. The family decided to travel to a tourist spot in the Alps. However, a tragedy made them unable to reach their destination.
A ride up the mountain in a cable car is required to visit the scenic spot. However, a cable broke during the journey that sent the cable car plunging to the earth’s surface below.
Regina Margherita hospital sources revealed that a “last hug” from Amit saved Eitan because his dad’s body might have served as a cushion during the crash’s impact.
“Dad had a sturdy build; perhaps the last instinctive hug to protect him from death saved him,” a source is quoted as saying in the Italian news outlet TGCOM24.
There were fourteen other fatalities in the cable car accident. Among those killed were Eitan’s 2-year-old brother, Amit and Tal, Eitan’s dad and mom, and great-grandparents Yitzhak Cohen and Barbara Cohen Konisky.
“Where is my mom?” Eitan repeatedly asked the medics who responded to the crash.
He suffered from severe injuries to the head and leg. However, the worst pain that he could feel was the dreadful loss of his immediate family and the awareness that his dad’s last embrace saved him from the fatal crash.
The child spent several days sedated and intubated in the hospital. When he finally became conscious, his aunt and other grandparents slowly informed the boy that his family is no longer with them.
“He is learning it through his family and psychologists, with all the sensitivity of the case,” said the family’s lawyer, Cristina Pagni. “Fortunately, his aunt, paternal grandmother, and maternal grandfather are next to him. Other relatives have come up from Israel, it is a large family that is doing everything possible to help him together with the psychologists.”
There is no doubt that Eitan’s family will be a support as the child processes and understands the tragic incident that took away his loved ones. God, in His mercy, will take care of Eitan as he heals through this awful accident.