Italian family witnessed crash of WWII pilot, meets his Rock Hill family 71 years later

Apr 24, 2014 1276

Gaetano and Caroline Simonelli were just children on a farm in Nazi-occupied Italy in 1943 when a fighter plane screamed across the sky and crashed within feet of their home.

The pilot was killed. The Simonelli family, devout Roman Catholics, buried him right there on the farm.

In a Rock Hill cemetery on Monday – 71 years later – an old man named Bobby Williams came up to Gaetano "Guy" Simonelli, now 81, and his sister, Caroline Simonelli Gonzalez, now 79.

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