LOMMEL, Belgium (AP) — King Albert II and thousands of mourners on Wednesday remembered the 28 victims of last week’s bus crash in a Swiss tunnel during a memorial service centering on the 22 schoolchildren whose promise of youth was shattered by sudden death.
Under a sparkling sky, soldiers took part in a solemn procession that carried 15 coffins into a 5,000-capacity hall. The brown casket contained the remains of a teacher, the 14 white ones held the bodies of children who were on the cusp of their teenage years.
The students and the teacher were from one of two schools in northern Belgium that shared a bus for a traditional “snow class” vacation in Switzerland. They were returning from that exuberant holiday on March 13 when tragedy struck. Their bus, carrying 52 people, slammed into a tunnel wall. In addition to the dead, 24 children were injured.
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