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Saturday 24 June 2017

'I'm about to go to heaven' - heartbreaking call to parents

Marco and Gloria were trapped on the 23rd floor
Marco and Gloria were trapped on the 23rd floor

A young and talented Italian woman telephoned her mother to say her goodbyes as her flat was engulfed in the Grenfell Tower blaze.

Marco Gottardi and his girlfriend Gloria Trevisan, both architects from the Veneto region of northern Italy, are missing and feared dead by their families.

The two lived on the 23rd floor of the 24-storey tower block that went up in flames.

After graduating with high marks in architecture, the couple had moved to London last March after Ms Trevisan couldn't find work in Italy that paid more than €300 a month.

In London, Ms Trevisan found a job that paid £1,800 (€2,050) a month and was happily embarking on her new career.

When the fire broke out, she immediately called her parents, who began recording all her subsequent calls.

"These are terrible, agonising calls," said Maria Cristina Sandri, the lawyer for Ms Trevisan's family, who said she cried as she listened to the audio files with the parents on Thursday morning.

According to Italian media accounts, the 26-year-old architect first called in the evening telling her parents there was a fire on the third floor, but both she and her parents seemed certain that firefighters would have extinguished the fire before it got anywhere near her apartment on the 23rd floor.

When she called again at about 3am in Italy, her parents had turned on the television in their home near Padua and had begun watching a live broadcast of the tower in flames as they spoke with their daughter on the phone.

Rescuers

"We can't get out, we are blocked," Gloria said.

The last call came at 4.07am Italian time, as smoke was pouring into the apartment.

"I am so sorry I can never hug you again. I had my whole life ahead of me. It's not fair. I don't want to die. I wanted to help you, to thank you for all you did for me," she is reported to have said.

"I am about to go to heaven, I will help you from there."

"There's a lot of smoke but don't worry, we're waiting for the rescuers," Mr Gottardi had told his father, Giannino, at around 2am UK time.

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