Tributes to Catalonian pilot killed in Cork air crash
Published 17/02/2011 | 08:13
MORE than 500 mourners gathered yesterday for the funeral Mass of the Spanish pilot killed in the Cork air crash.
Family and friends paid their last respects to Jordi Sola Lopez (31) in his home town in Catalonia in north eastern Spain.
His devastated parents, Toni Sola Vila and Rosa Lopez Coma, comforted his girlfriend Sarabel Ruiz.
Mr Sola Lopez, one of six people who died in last Thursday's accident, had been cremated earlier in the week in Ireland before being flown to Spain by colleagues from Air Lada.
His ashes -- which sat in a small wooden box draped in a simple yellow and red ribbon, the colours of the Catalan national flag -- were placed at the front of Our Lady of Mount Carmen church in Manresa, some 70km from Barcelona.
After the Requiem Mass a family friend read out a moving tribute in Catalan from Jordi's parents and girlfriend, a psychologist and fellow ballroom dancer.
"He lived intensely, devouring life. He loved and was loved.
"He will always be with us, living in our hearts. He was the best friend, the best colleague, the best son.
"The luckiest thing was having him, being able to share his life, and now feeling him always with us," the statement read.
Mr Sola Lopez was an only child and was a champion ballroom dancer.
An experienced co-pilot, he had only recently begun operating as a captain.