Church to memorialize couple lost in cruise ship disaster

WHITE BEAR LAKE, Minn. (AP) — A White Bear Lake church is holding a memorial Mass for the married couple lost in last month’s Italian cruise ship disaster.

Jerry and Barbara Heil were deeply involved members of St. Pius the X Catholic Church. The church service to remember them is set at the Saturday morning service.

The Heils are the only Americans still missing after the Jan. 13 shipwreck. Italian authorities called off the search for victims at the end of January due to the danger posed to rescue workers. The Heils’ adult children said they were disappointed but accepted the decision.

Jerry Heil was 69 years old and retired from the Minnesota Department of Agriculture. Barbara Heil was 70 and along with her husband was very active in church life.