9-year-old twin sisters missing in wild fires were hugging their grandparents when they died

Ksenia Novikova
Aug 01, 2018
05:21 P.M.
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The bodies of two missing girls have been identified on Friday. They died in a wildfire in Greece along with their grandparents and 26 other victims. 


A friend of the family, Angelos Kontos, wrote on Facebook in Greek: 'Epilogue written. All four found hugging each other. Even death couldn't separate them.' 

The twins, Sophia and Vassiliki Philippopoulou fled the fires with their grandparents and were reported missing soon after. Their bodies were found 25 miles north of Athens, in the Mati village. 

The fires raged from Monday evening, and at least 90 people were killed. 26 of the victims, including the twins, were trapped on a cliff's edge.

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The twins were visiting their grandparents in the nearby village. Their father, Yiannis, thought he recognized them on TV during a rescue operation but mistook them for two other girls.

More than 500 homes were destroyed in the raging wildfire, and the death toll remains uncertain as many homes and buildings are yet to be inspected. 


The process of identifying victims has also been delayed. In some cases, the bodies are too burned for an identification to be made, and many families are clinging to hope that their loved ones are still alive. 

According to BBC, 60 people are being treated for burns with 11 in intensive care, but dozens are still missing.

A political spokesperson for the Democratic Party, Maria Spyraki, blamed the government for their lack of warnings via printed and social media. 


Spyraki also believes that more emergency personnel and first responders could have been made available to facilitate the evacuation process. 

A lack of access routes and poor city planning also contributed to the high death toll, and Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras "assumed political responsibility." 


It was the worst wildfire to hit Greece this century. In 2007, fires swept across 670,000 acres of land and took the lives of 84 citizens.

In recent news, two children were killed in the California wildfires that claimed eight lives and saw approximately 40,000 residents evacuated.