20-Oct-2021 Source: Polizia di Stato
The Italian State Police Air Service celebrates its 50th anniversary: half a century in flight with airplanes and helicopters capable of providing invaluable help from above in emergency situations. Men and women, who since 1971 have always been ready for take-off to operate in difficult-to-reach contexts, to transport operational units, if necessary, and to search for and rescue missing people.
Since the establishment of the Police Air Service, and the birth of the I Flight Group at the Pratica di Mare airport, near Rome, another 10 Departments have been created on the national territory to guarantee safety even from the air.
These first 50 years (see selection of historical photos below) of flight were told in the in- depth analysis of Poliziamoderna , the official magazine of the State Police.
On the occasion of this important anniversary, this morning, the head of the Police Lamberto Giannini participated in the title of the briefing room of the Flight Department in Pratica di Mare, dedicated to the memory of the first manager Giovanni Liguori and the chief inspector Eliano Falivene who in 2007, precisely on October 16, near Rome, they lost their lives in a helicopter accident during a training flight. Their sacrifice was remembered by the words of Mrs. Fortuna Pappalardo, wife of Inspector Falivene and Mrs. Viviana Liguori, granddaughter of Giovanni Liguori.
The ceremony was attended by the Air Force General Mauro Lunardi, commander of the Airport, the Deputy Chief of Police Central Director of the Criminal Police Vittorio Rizzi and the Central Director for the Road, Railway, Communications and Special Departments Police, Daniela Stradiotto.
During the ceremony , moderated by Valeria Cangelosi, director of the Air Service, the history of our specialists was retraced with a commemorative video followed by the interventions of Claudio Mastromattei, director of the Special Departments Service, and Saverio Urso, manager of the Flight Department of Pratica di Mare.
For the occasion, the book and the photographic exhibition “The wings of the Police – From 50 years in flight” curated by the world-famous photographer Massimo Sestini were presented .
Chief of Police in Pratica di MareIn the closing speech, prefect Giannini underlined: “I thank all the members of the flight departments of which I am proud because I am seeing, often going on missions around Italy, how much professionalism, how much preparation and also how much sense of attachment to duty there is”.
When time passes – continued prefect Giannini – when we go to rest, when there will be others, there will always be a witness who will be handed down. In my opinion that there are well-carved names, well-carved memories, will help the new generations in this passage because the people we lose, our fallen ones, will always be our example and that is what we must look to in difficult times.
The naming ceremony for the I Flight Department for the 50th Anniversary – At the end, the police chief proceeded to uncover the plaque dedicated to the two pilots, blessed by Don Antonio Raaidy, chaplain of the State Police, and to hand over the naming decree to the family.
After the naming ceremony, the prefect Giannini and the guests present were able to visit the photographic exhibition set up in the rooms adjacent to the room dedicated to Inspector Falivene and the first manager Liguori.