A man looks at a car crushed under rubble near the port, following an earthquake on the island of Kos, Greece on July 22, 2017.
A man looks at a car crushed under rubble near the port, following an earthquake on the island of Kos, Greece on July 22, 2017. YANNIS KOLESIDIS

'They were sleeping when it hit': Harry tells of quake

ROSEWOOD cafe owner Harry Pizanias was nothing short of relieved when he received a welcome text from his brother last week from the earthquake-struck Greek island of Kos.

Mr Pizanias' brother Michael and mother Maria were holidaying on the Greek island when a powerful magnitude-6.7 earthquake struck.

The quake killed two people and injured about 200.

Owner Harry Pizanias of Harry's Place Cafe in Rosewood was fearful for the safety of his mother and brother following the earthquake in Kos.
Owner Harry Pizanias of Harry's Place Cafe in Rosewood was fearful for the safety of his mother and brother following the earthquake in Kos. David Nielsen

A tsunami then followed but fortunately Michael and Maria were up high in a village on Kos and were not injured by the force of nature.

Speaking to the QT this week Harry Pizanias said he was just grateful to get a text from Michael saying they were safe.

He was glad he did not first hear about the earthquake on the news, otherwise he would have been worried sick.

"They were there holidaying in Kos when the quake shook quite big,” Mr Pizanias said.

"They were sleeping around 1am in the morning when the first one hit and mum said a lot of the old buildings collapsed around her.

"A cafe came down and a wall, but they both said the aftershock was quite scary because they were ricocheting one after the other.

"When they thought it was all over it started again, and then started again.

"It was a bit of a worry but mum was quite high up and didn't see the damage until she went for a coffee in the morning.

Michael Pizanias was safe.
Michael Pizanias was safe. Contributed

"The people closer to the water felt most of the shock.”

Harry's brother texted him at 1.30am Greek time and mid-morning in Australia to say he and his mum were OK.

There was some humour too with Harry texting back that he should "shake that arse”, to lighten the mood. Mr Pizanias said he was sad at the loss of life and damage to property and historical buildings.

"Any death is sad,” he said.

"Architecture is history and when something like that goes it is very hard to put back together.”

Harry's father Antonios is from Naples, another area no stranger to the forces of nature.

"Dad told me about all the earthquakes when I was younger when we went there for a trip,” Harry said.



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