Giovinazzo: the story of Lieutenant Piscitelli, a war hero killed at the age of 22 – vintage photos so as not to forget

On the occasion of the national holiday of 2 June , in Giovinazzo (Ba) there will be the unveiling of a toponymic plaque dedicated to the highly decorated Tenente Raffaele Piscitelli , which will be located on the street already in his name, at the corner with via Guglielmo Marconi . The ceremony will begin at 11.00 am, in the presence of the major municipal institutions, headed by the outgoing mayor Tommaso Depalma, the Giovinazzo Weapon Associations, the town band and the hero’s family members, represented by the president of the Family Foundation Piscitelli D’Agostino ‘:

After the great participation of the public and institutions in the event held last May 24 at the Vittorio Emanuele Institute and the assignment of scholarships in honor of Lieutenant Piscitelli to the young students of the “Matteo Spinelli” high school in the town of Bari, the unveiling of the plaque is the final act of the celebrations for the centenary of the birth of the illustrious Giovinazzese Silver and Bronze Medal for Military Valor, slain during the Second World War. Born on 2 May 1921, Piscitelli was shot, together with other officers, on 1 October 1943, at the age of only 22, about 35 kilometers from Split.. His body now rests in the majestic military shrine of the Lido of Venice. To eternalize the memory of his heroic sacrifice, a classroom of the historic city high school and the aforementioned street that connects via G. Marconi to via A. Gioia and via B. Cairoli have already been named after him. The hope of the Piscitelli family is that the plaque can serve those who travel the road of the same name to nourish the memory of those who strongly believed in the values ​​of their homeland and who sacrificed themselves, giving the most precious good, to ensure freedom for the new generations. , democracy, legality, respect for institutions, solidarity and a sense of the common good. Values ​​that should be defended and pursued, even if only to have to give meaning to the thousands of young officers and the multitude of soldiers who gave their lives for our Italy, not only during world conflicts, but also in peacekeeping missions. Below, more period photos and the biography of Lieutenant Piscitelli:

Ten. Raffaele Piscitelli (1921-1943)

Silver and Bronze Medal for Military Valor


Raffaele Piscitelli was born in Giovinazzo on May 2, 1921. He was the eldest of three brothers (Raffaele, Francesco, Antonio) and had modest origins: his father Pasquale was employed at the State Railways and his mother Isabella was a housewife.

He showed gifts of vivacity, promptness and intelligence from an early age. He attended the Elementary and Middle School, then the Giovinazzo Gymnasium. At the age of 15, conditioned by the great attraction he had for the military uniform, he made his choice of him, entering the “Nunziatella” Military School in Naples to attend high school.

The high school diploma obtained at the “Nunziatella” of Naples gave him an easy ticket to enter the Royal Academy of Infantry in Modena, when he was just eighteen.

After two years in the Academy, on 12 May 1941, he received the nomination as Second Lieutenant in spe and was assigned to the 25th “Bergamo” Infantry Regiment in Cervignano del Friuli, where he remained only a few months, because he was transferred to Pola (August 1941) , as Instructor of the University Infantry Preparatory Course.

Later he left for the front in Yugoslavia, where he was engaged in Croatia (November 1941), in Livno in Bosnia (December ’41), in Vjestica Gora in Balkania (summer ’42). In this last place he was awarded the Bronze Medal to the VM for the following reason: “Commander of platoon explorers, already distinguished in previous actions, he led the unit to the assault of a well-equipped position, managing to put the enemy to flight. Although wounded, he refused any help and, replacing a fallen weapon holder, persisted in the fire. Only when the fight was over, did he allow himself to be medicated “(10-12 July 1942).

In the spring of ’43 he received the degrees of Lieutenant. The tragic events of his death caught him unexpectedly after the armistice of 8 September 1943 and due to a series of unfortunate circumstances.
After that date, in fact, the soldiers stationed in that area of ​​Yugoslavia went down to Split, where they had to embark for the expected return to their homeland. However, the naval units destined for the operation were insufficient for all soldiers.

Lt. Piscitelli, now commander of the 5th Company of the 25th Reggi ment Infantry “Bergamo”, should have been part of the first boarding, as evidenced by the evidence gathered, but he preferred to stay with the remaining part of his soldiers, thus proving to be a true commander , rare example in such moments.

While waiting for other convoys, on the morning of September 27 the German army occupied Split and the remaining units of the Italian soldiers were overwhelmed and captured. The officers, almost 500, were separated from the rest of the soldiers and transported to a barracks a few kilometers away for individual interrogation. They wanted to know what command they had, what orders they had received and above all if they wanted to continue fighting. Lt. Piscitelli, like many other officers, replied that he did not want to continue fighting, since that was the order he had received.

The interrogation ended on the afternoon of 1 October and that same evening a German interpreter read a list of about 45 officers, including Lieutenant Raffaele Piscitelli. While the rest of the officers were deported in the following days to concentration camps, this part was immediately loaded onto trucks and transported to a hill in Signo, near Treglia, about 35 kilometers from Split.

On the evening of 1 October 1943 at about 9.30 pm our Hero faced death by shooting together with the other Officers with immense courage and was buried with them in a common grave. His body remained in this pit until, in 1955, the daughter of one of the slain officers began the search for the recovery of these war heroes. Her body was exhumed together with the others and today rests at the majestic Military Memorial of the Lido of Venice. In 1958 a further silver medal was awarded to the memory of Lt. Piscitelli at the VM.

A classroom of the Liceo “M. Spinelli” in Giovinazzo was dedicated to Ten. Raffaele Piscitelli, while the city of Giovinazzo wanted to eternalize his heroic sacrifice by naming him the road that connects Via G. Marconi to Via A. Gioia and Via B Cairoli.

Ten, Raffaele Piscitelli was an extraordinary representative of those timeless values ​​such as courage, trust in one’s ideals, the aptitude for sacrifice to achieve high goals, the continuous desire for knowledge, the high conception of the family, unshakable faith in God.

In his short but very intense life he ardently desired to pursue his life intentions, inspired by the great fascination he had for the military uniform and for the ideals of his homeland, assuming, since he was a boy just over fifteen, all those responsibilities, with annexes sacrifices, necessary to crown his plan. This is why his life can be an inspiration, if not a model,
also for young citizens looking for a healthy life project, regardless of what the fields of application may be. It is true that today it could be very difficult to imagine a young man of only 22 with the responsibility of commanding a company of soldiers on a battlefield in the middle of the war, as well as to imagine a boy who, at only 15 years old, in the years’ 30 of the twentieth century, you can separate from your family affections and from your hometown to attend the high school in the “Nunziatella” Military School in Naples, with the then very strict rules of coexistence, but it is precisely the great values ​​and great inspirations, accompanied by courage and from determination, which can help in carrying out a project, then as now. On the other hand, Lt.

The occasion of the centenary of the birth of Lt. Piscitelli leads to reflect on the great values ​​of life, as well as on the great changes that have taken place in our society in just under a century. That of Ten. Piscitelli was a generation inspired by the great values ​​of the Risorgimento homeland, which today could be identified with the values ​​of freedom, democracy, legality, respect for institutions, solidarity and a sense of the common good. Values ​​that should be defended and followed, even if only to have to give meaning to the thousands of young officers and the multitude of soldiers who gave their lives for our Italy.

Regarding the blog , we remind you that it is possible to receive all the news in real time from Telegram by subscribing to the following address > < from Instagram at the following address > < as well as from Facebook by clicking ” like ” on and from Twitter at the following address > < . Also through Telegram it is also possible to send us reports in real time also withvideos and photos. It is also possible to write to us via Whatsapp to send us reports also with photos and videos by clicking here and subscribe to the Whatsapp group to receive our links by clicking here .