A former long-serving commandant in the Swiss Guard was the victim of the parcel bomb sent to the Swiss embassy on December 23.
Known only as Andreas C, the 53-year-old lost part of his left hand in the explosion which was thought to have been the work of an anarchist terrorist group.
A native of Stalden near Zermatt, Andreas C. served 27 years in the Swiss Guard and became one of John Paul II¹s most trusted bodyguards. He was present during one of the pontiff’s most difficult visits, to Berlin in the mid 1990s, when protesters threw missiles at the Popemobile.
Since 2004, he has been the caretaker and head of security at the Swiss embassy in Rome.
According to the Swiss newspaper Blick, Andreas C tried to examine the parcel when it exploded, shredding his ring finger. The ambassador’s wife, Maria Regazzoni, tended to his wounds until emergency services arrived.
Earlier a former captain of the Swiss Guard had confirmed to me that the victim was one of his most respected colleagues.
Another parcel bomb was sent to the Chilean embassy in Rome, injuring an official. A further bomb sent to the Greek embassy was intercepted yesterday.