Aris Ballestrazzi – the founder of Italy’s Sitma Machinery – sadly passed away on March 19 after contracting COVID-19, his family have confirmed.
The loss of Aris Ballestrazzi has come as Italy lives through unprecedented lockdowns and closures brought on by the spread of the highly contagious and deadly pandemic that is also impacting the world.
“On the 19th of March in Italy, we celebrate St. Joseph’s day; the symbol of dedication and humility; ‘Father’s Day’. Yesterday was the 19th of March 2020, and by some tragic coincidence, we lost our ‘father and founder’ Aris Ballestrazzi,” Ballestrazzi’s family said in a statement.
“Here in Italy, as throughout the rest of the globe, we are fighting this silent and deadly virus – COVID-19 – and it has brought yet another painful loss.
“There are no words to describe the anguish and pain for such a heavy loss; no hugs for the family, and no hand shaking between friends and colleagues.
“During this Corona virus period, we are only permitted to talk to one another through the matrix of digital time, allowing us all to stay in contact, yet we are all so physically distant.”
Aris Ballestrazzi founded Sitma in 1965 and has been with the business ever since.
“He guided it to such an illustrious notoriety, held its hand through ‘thick and thin’, yet all with the determination and awareness that sets him apart as a father,” the company said.
“We should remember Aris for his immense strength and his profound integrity, after all, his word was his honour and these are the values that distinguish Sitma. Aris was an honest man. Aris was a good man.
“Yesterday, on the 19th of March 2020, we said goodbye to Aris Ballestrazzi. An illuminated entrepreneur and a symbol of humility, who dedicated his life to his family – Sitma.
“Aris taught every single one of us something, and the only way we can all thank and honour such an extraordinary person is by committing ourselves even more to the family he created at Sitma, helping it shine and prosper in the years to come, all whilst following in the giant footsteps he created over the last 55 years.”
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