GIGLIO, Italy, July 14 (UPI) -- Church bells rang, ship horns blew and a memorial mass was celebrated six months after the Costa Concordia disaster in Giglio, Italy, killed 32 people.
The 32 victims were remembered at the mass Friday, euronews reported.
Erika Fani Soria Sanchez, whose sister was killed, attended the mass.
"It is difficult, it is still difficult because I'm living this for her," said Sanchez of Peru. "So coming here was not easy, as the sadness of being without my sister is still with me, and it's hard for the whole family and also for me."
Salvage teams removed the first part of a rock reef the cruise ship hit before sinking in January, Italy's ANSA news agency reported.
The piece of rock is to remain in Giglio and may become part of a memorial to the victims, ANSA said.
Removal operations, which include re-floating the cruise ship, are expected to take up to a year.