Boy, 7, died after a beating at a Catholic school, abuse inquiry told

Boy, 7, died after a beating at a Catholic school, abuse inquiry told October 9, 2019

ALDO Moroni, a pupil at a prestigious Catholic school in Scotland, was beaten so viciously for spending too much time in the toilet that he died of his injuries.

Aldo Moroni’s photo on his gravestone

Details of the boy’s death in 1980 emerged yesterday during a hearing at the the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry, established in 2015.

The boy was assaulted by Brother Germanus – David McKell – who was part of the teaching team at St Columba’s College in Largs, Ayrshire

A man, identified only as Edward, told the hearing his nephew said Aldo was “killed”.

He also said he was abused by McKell numerous times while he was at the Scottish school in the 1960s.

Edward said:

Aldo Moroni, a little boy, was getting a vicious beating on the landing outside the toilet for supposedly being in the toilet too long.

[My nephew said] there was screaming and holy murder going on; it got worse, and the next thing we [the nephew and his classmates] knew, there’s an ambulance there, and the next thing we knew we are at a funeral in Dunoon – Aldo was dead.

The hearing was told the pupils had been told the boy had died of a heart attack at the time.

Senior counsel to the inquiry Colin MacAulay QC said Edward:

Drew a link between the beating happening and the death.

The inquiry was told Edward felt guilty for not reporting his alleged abuse at the hands of McKell, claiming he informed the Marist Brothers – who ran the school – and they told him not to tell the police.

Edward said:

I thought about my cowardice – could I have stopped that boy being killed?

He told how he ran away from the school in around 1964 or 1965 while living in “fear and horror”.

The former pupil said he would be woken in bed my McKell and abused, being beaten if he made a noise.

He told the inquiry:

I would describe myself as being zombified… I wasn’t able to speak.

Edward also told how McKell broke the news to him after his brother had died in 1965, saying he had “gone to heaven” and if he ever told anyone about the abuse he would never see his brother again.


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