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Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 22 June 2018

Spain attacks: More tragic details emerge about the dead and missing

A seven-year-old is missing while two women in their seventies are among those confirmed killed after a van ploughed indiscriminately into crowds on Barcelona's Las Ramblas

People gather around an impromptu memorial in Barcelona on August 19, 2017, two days after a van ploughed into pedestrians on the city's famous Las Ramblas street. Reuters
People gather around an impromptu memorial in Barcelona on August 19, 2017, two days after a van ploughed into pedestrians on the city's famous Las Ramblas street. Reuters

It’s a picture any parent would be proud of.

Dressed in his smart green nursery school uniform, Julian Alessandro Cadman’s brown eyes peek out from beneath a mop of dark hair as he beams into the camera lens for his school photo.

This picture has now been shared by thousands of people across the world as the search to find the seven-year-old continues. He has been missing since a van ploughed indiscriminately into tourists walking along Barcelona’s most famous street, Las Ramblas.

Julian Alessandro Cadman, 7, has been reported missing by his family following the Barcelona attack. Tony Cadman / Facebook
Julian Alessandro Cadman, 7, has been reported missing by his family following the Barcelona attack. Tony Cadman / Facebook

In Spain’s worst terror attack for a decade, at least 13 died and scores were left wounded when the attackers struck the tourist hotspot of Barcelona on Thursday. In the early hours of the following morning, another vehicle attack took place in the coastal town of Cambrils, killing one woman. In total, 130 people have been injured.

Julian, who holds both British and Australian citizenship, was walking with his mother, Jom, on Las Ramblas at the time of the attack. They became separated and although the family report that his mother has been located in a nearby hospital, in a serious but stable condition, no one has seen or heard from Julian.

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The UK foreign office has deployed extra staff to Barcelona and are offering help to the Spanish authorities in a bid to find the missing boy. Julian’s father, Andrew Cadman, from Sydney, said they had spoken only hours before the attack and is flying to Spain to search for his son.

Victims of the attacks are from at least 34 different countries, the Catalan regional government said. At least 26 French nationals were hurt, with 11 of them seriously injured. Australian citizens are unaccounted for and nationals from Germany, Pakistan, the Philippines, Taiwan, Greece and Hong Kong are also among the injured.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, described the attacks as "cowardly acts of terrorism" on Twitter and sent his "sincere condolences to Spain's people and leadership". He also wished the injured "a fast recovery".

The first victim to be named was an Italian father-of-two, Bruno Gulotta, 35, who was out walking with his young family. Spanish media report that Gulotta was holding his five-year-old son’s hand when he was hit by the van. The boy, Alexander, was dragged to safety by his mother, Martina. His daughter, Aria, who is only seven months old, was strapped to her mother’s chest. Gulotta’s friends reflected that she will now grow up without knowing her father.

“We put ourselves in the shoes of little Alexander, who is preparing to start elementary school in the knowledge that his life and family will no longer be the same,” Gulotta’s colleague Roberto Buonanno said.

“And then we think of little Aria, who will not remember the horrible scene but will never know her dad.”

Mr Gulotta was one of two Italians killed, Italian prime minister Paolo Gentiloni confirmed.

The second, Luca Rosso, 25, had been on holiday with his girlfriend, who was hospitalised following the attack. A university educated man, he lived in northern Italy in Treviso and reportedly volunteered for the Green Cross charity.

His sister sent out a plea looking for help to find her brother just an hour before he was named as one of the dead.

A 60-year-old man from Granada was the first Spanish victim to be identified. Francisco López Rodríguez died in the attack, as did his wife’s niece and a three-year-old child related to the family. His wife is seriously injured. Rodríguez’s niece attempted to use social media to find her uncle but, following a slew of frantic messages, she tweeted that he had died.

The three-year-old is thought to be the youngest victim. A six-year-old girl has been hospitalised with a cerebral haemorrhage, according to The New York Times.

Described as “compassionate, generous [and] adventurous”, news that a Canadian grandfather had died broke when his daughter, a Vancouver police officer, released a statement. In it, she publicly thanked bystanders and emergency workers who cared for her mother and tried to save her father’s life, as well as those who had offered their sympathy and support. Ian Moore Wilson had been on holiday with his wife of 53 years, Valerie.

An American from Walnut Creek, California, is also among the dead. Jared Tucker, a 43-year-old construction worker, was celebrating his first wedding anniversary with his wife, a teacher, Heidi Nunes. Moments before the attack, in which they became separated, the couple had been enjoying drinks outside on the iconic street.

"Next thing I know there's screaming, yelling," Ms Nunes told NBC News. "I got pushed inside the souvenir kiosk and stayed there hiding while everybody kept running by screaming."

A photograph which appears to show a severely injured Tucker being helped by someone in a black T-shirt is circulating online. On Friday night, Ms Nunes identified the body of her husband.

A 44-year-old football fan called Elke Vanbockrijck, who friends described as a “super woman” and “honey of a mom”, was killed in the attack. She was on holiday with her husband and two teenage sons, aged 11 and 14. The Belgium national’s wedding had been presided over by Patrick Dewael, the mayor of her town, Tongeren, who sent his condolences.

Elke Vanbockrijck, 44, one of the victims of the Barcelona attack, was described by friends as a 'super woman' and 'honey of a mom'. Tom's Hardware Italy via AP
Elke Vanbockrijck, 44, one of the victims of the Barcelona attack, was described by friends as a 'super woman' and 'honey of a mom'. Tom's Hardware Italy via AP

Pepita Codina, 75, a hairdresser from the small Spanish town of Hipolit de Voltrega, died in the attack. Another woman in her seventies, from Portugal, also died, according to the country’s news agency.

Anna Maria Suarez, 61, from Zaragoza, in northern Spain, was the only victim to die in the attack in Cambrils. She was with her husband and sister, who were both injured.

King Felipe VI and his wife, Queen Leitzia, who have been leading the country in mourning, visited victims of the Barcelona attack in hospital on Saturday. It came a day after the king led the country in a minute of silence to remember those killed.