Eleven family members who were attending a baptism in Mexico’s Puebla state Tuesday died after the tremors of a 7.1 earthquake caused the church roof to collapse.
The 2-month-old baby girl who was being christened and at least three more minors were among the dead, KNBC reported.
The only people inside the Santiago Apostol church who survived were the girl’s father, the priest and the priest’s assistant. “It was a scene of horror, sadness with most of the people inside the church dying,” the priest’s assistant, Lorenzo Sanchez, told The Associated Press.
Mexico: 11 relatives die after quake church collapse during baby's baptism.
— Pat Sanchez (@patlks5757) September 21, 2017
— Newletterus (@Newletterus) September 21, 2017
Those who died did not have time to move to the edges of the weathered church when the swaying began, Sanchez said.
“One of the things they taught us is to stick to the firm walls of our church, which is old and its structure a bit deteriorated,” he said. First responders immediately attended to the church – located in the town of Atzala — once the shaking stopped. After hours of digging through rubble and debris, the exhausted workers laid out the bodies of the 11 relatives in the street where a party was set to take place after the baptism.
The coffins lined the street in a row and each had the name of the person inside.
Eleven members of a family died, including the 2-month-old girl being christened. dead https://t.co/9fIIlxCjP4
— Globalnews.ca (@globalnews) September 21, 2017
More than 200 people have died after the powerful earthquake, which struck near the town of Raboso in Puebla state Tuesday afternoon.