Daughter of a colonel who was killed in the Turkish invasion: I did not know his caress

She feels excited as a circle that remained open for decades and looked like an open wound closes permanently

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In Cyprus, in order to receive the bones of her father, who has been missing for 47 years, is Eleni Kokka, the daughter of Colonel Konstantinos Kokkas, whose name is on the list of the seven identified missing persons, whose traces were lost during the Turkish invasion of Cyprus in July 1974.

As she reports to protothema.gr, she feels excited as a circle that remained open for decades and looked like an open wound closes permanently.

"We have been in Cyprus for a few hours now. They took us to the anthropological laboratory to show us the place where the excavations took place, where the bones were found, how they were collected and sent for identification and further tests in laboratories in America. "They will also hand over the anthropological medical report, where we will sign the certificate and receive the bones," he says.

"I feel deeply moved because what we have been supporting all these years was recognized, that my father left fighting and that he fell in favor of faith and homeland. The fact that his bones were found testifies to the whole truth and thus closes the circle that we had open inside us for 47 years. "If they do not tell you something, you continue to hope, ignored, but you hope", he adds.

The bones of Colonel Konstantinos Kokkas were not found in a mass grave, but at the place where he fell dead, in Kioneli, the village of the province of Nicosia where the great battle began.

"We will receive a small part of the bones because at the point where they were found there is a river with the result that due to the overflows many parts have moved to other places. The bones were found in the village of Kioneli in the anti-tank moat or in the ditch "Tsinar", where the battle took place on July 20-21, 1974. All these years we had a testimony that said that my father was killed but without evidence. Excavation permits have begun in recent years because all of this land was privately owned. It happened and someone found a trace of bone and so they decided to unroll the carcass. They dug a long distance because they found various scattered pieces. "Finally, from the testimonies they had and the investigations, they found two skeletons of men of my father and the Rev. Thomas Koukoulis", points out Mrs. Kokka.

For the Kokka family, locating their father's bones was the purpose of life. "We feel great honor for our father, for his bravery, the ethos he indicated, his self-sacrifice, he was a 37-year-old boy. Years ago, the information given by my mother was that he was constantly wearing his wedding ring and a watch. A watch was found, we took a photo of it and I think my mother might recognize it because I was little then and I do not remember. Belts from belts, buttons from coats, socks that we do not know who they belong to were also found. "Everything was found scattered, while many were altered," said the Colonel's daughter.

"I did not know his caress, I did not hear his voice, his form, but his love for the homeland is enough for me. My sister remembers something, but not much. My mother remembers everything. From 2019, his daughters informed us that they had found something and we told my mother little by little. What we wanted to do for so many years finally happened. It was all our duty. "Some may have refused to come because it is soul-destroying, but we always said he had to be found, repatriated and buried as he deserves in his place," she added excitedly.

DNA testing revealed the truth. "Members of the research effort had come since 2010 and took DNA samples from all of us. From me, my sister, my mom, from his sister and two cousins ​​and it finally turned out that he was. He will be buried with the new year in his homeland in Peta Arta with all the honors, with the mayor Rozina Skoufa Vavetsi having shown great interest, while in a short time we will receive his sword ", he concludes.

Source: First Topic