"Is it a shame to be from Amstetten now?"
From Amstetten reported ChroniquesDuVasteMonde chief reporter Meike Dinklage
Lights for the victims: More than 200 Amstetten people met yesterday for a memorial service
In the morning the candles are burning in the main square of Amstetten. More than 200 people had met there on Tuesday evening and lit lanterns and lights, they had stood together in the rain, quiet and thoughtful, and tried to be clear about what it means from now on: to be an Amstettener. "From speechlessness to confidence," says Alexandra Eisenstöck, 35, "that was our motto, we wanted to get it started." And her friend Ursula Kloimüller, 45, says: "Only a few days ago I would have said myself: Such things can not happen to us."
It happened. The case Fritzl, the incest drama in the basement of Ybbsstraße 40, Amstetten. The two women founded the initiative Lichtermeer, on Tuesday morning at 7.30 clock they came up with the idea. "We brought our nine-year-old daughters to the school, which was closed off by the police, to protect the students, and we found the atmosphere so depressing that we decided, for the sake of our children, we must do something."
Alexandra Eisenstöck and Ursula Kloimüller: "We wanted to set a sign for the family"
The two mothers organized the memorial service privately and as much as possible, within a few hours. "Also because of the young people who get everything fully", says Ursula Kloimüller, "they have problems to come out as Amstettener." Her 14-year-old daughter had told her: It would be a shame from now on to be from Amstetten.
"The very decision to do something, to speak publicly about it, was a liberation," says Alexandra Eisenstöck. "One dared to think in small steps about what the tragedy means for each one of us, but now we have to be there for each other and not less."
The crowd in the main square
When in the evening the OB van fleet, which otherwise parks in front of the Fritzls' house, moved towards the main square, "we were already feeling queasy," says Alexandra Eisenstöck: "What if no Amstettener comes?" But then came hundreds, with lights and lamps, a driving school donated lighters, a furniture store candles. And afterwards it was like a shared relief. "We are all part of this place, and now we all have to do with history," says Alexandra Eisenstöck.
"We also wanted to set a sign for the family", adds Ursula Kloimüller: "We wanted to show that it happened to you, but it also hurts us."
On Wednesday morning, the children returned to school without police protection.