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Flora Stuardo Overboard
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Overboard - Suicide Attempt or Attempted Cruise Ship Murder, Costa Fortuna Flam Norway - July 19, 2015

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Overboard - Suicide Attempt or Attempted Cruise Ship Murder, Costa Fortuna Flam Norway - July 19, 2015

On Sunday July 18, 2015 around 23:30 hours, Costa Cruises Costa Fortuna reported Flora Stuardo, 53, a banker from Turin, Italy went overboard from the cabin balcony where she and her boyfriend Giovanni Piawere guests, while the cruise ship was in Flam, Norway on a nine-day Northern Europe cruise.

Costa Fortuna was sailing with about 2,700 passengers aboard when Flora Stuardo fell from deck 10, falling into the sea. The sea at the time of the incident was 4º C.

Costa Fortuna CCTV shows Stuardo hanging onto the railing, before dropping 100 feet into the cold sea. Flora Stuardo was in the sea for several moments before she was rescued by the Port Authority who brought her ashore, said harbor master John Erik Johnsen. The rescue team found her unconscious, in critical condition. Stuardo was transported to Haukeland University Hospital in Bergen, Norway.

Costa Fortuna continued on the voyage, arriving at Stavenger, Norway. Track Costa Fortuna

Update:September 2, 2015
Numerous news reports say, Flora Stuardo received surgery while at Haukeland University Hospital and was in a coma for six weeks. Upon Awakening, she reportedly said, "I didn't try to kill myself, he threw me." Flora Stuardo remembers a quarrel with her boyfriend, something other passengers aboard Costa Fortuna reportedly heard.

Stuardo's boyfriend Giovanni Pia allegedly told investigators, he tried, unsuccessfully, to save Flora Staurdo but was not able to catch her in time. According to him, Flora Stuardo tried to commit suicide.

Giovanni Pia, her partner of three years, had an erratic relationship and frequent problems. No one else was with them. A crew member of the Costa Fortuna, the same person who gave the alarm, said he heard a violent quarrel come from a cabin right before he heard the splash into the water.

Stuardo had allegedly complained of ill-treatment once already, last year. "I thought he was a sensitive person. Instead one evening he came home drunk. He started screaming "Now I throw you out, you and your daughter, you are two bums". He grabbed me by the hair and dragged me out of the gate. " It was not the first time, she had told the police. Then she withdrew the lawsuit.

Flora Stuardo's condition has improved enough, she was airlifted back to Turin, Italy for continued treatment at a neurological rehabilitation facility.

Norwegian police were proceeding as an accident investigation. For now, Italian investigators can proceed because the incident took place formally at sea with an Italian victim at sea Turin police are now investigating the case as attempted murder. It is possible, once the investigation in Italy has concluded, Norway will demand the transfer of the case.

Update: December 20, 2015.
In media interviews this past week, Flora Stuardo is telling an entirely different story. Stuardo says from her hospital bed, she sees boyfriend Giovanni Pia every day. "He comes to see me every day and we are both very much in love. It is not true that I preferred to break off relations with him. Nor that we were in crisis and that this was a holiday to adjust our history."

She now says she does not think Giovanni Pia pushed her. She swears, "he would never, ever such a thing." Stuardo explains, "At the moment I can only say that I think my partner (under investigation for abuse and attempted murder). I do not think he could ever do a terrible thing like push me off the ship." But Mrs. Stuart excludes suicide: "I really love my life. But I do not understand why, if I was not trying to commit suicide, you should suspect my partner."

There had been other violent quarrels in the Stuardo's history with Giovanni Pia, she says "five or six rounds. Gianni was desperate for professional and family reasons. I tried to help him. It was violent. But every time, I reported him, I withdrew the complaint. Past that moment of anger, Gianni returned an angel. He told me that he could not live without me. The last time was in "October 2014. On that occasion I told him he had to get treatment and he did. He came back different. Another man. Much more proactive."

Stuardo speaks of the history she had with with her boyfriend. "My partner has faced a difficult period: I chose however to be near him. There had been some deaths, things are not easy to overcome. And I was trying to encourage him, sometimes depression leads to violent reactions. But later, when he was persuaded to be hospitalized for a month, things went well."

Stuardo tells of her current condition, "A few days ago I started walking. I also made my first steps. It takes some time, but I have a strong character. My has become an academic case: many doctors have contacted me to present my situation in many foreign universities. I will have to remain hospitalized a few more months. But I hope to return home soon. I have many things to do…".

From Flora Stuardo's more recent statements, above, regarding her past relationship with Giovanni Pia it's our opinion that this is an abusive relationship, one Flora Stuardo either accept or helpless in resolving how to fix or end the relationship.

In an article written on Psychology Today, reasons for staying in an abuse relationship, are outlined as "Sometimes for the victim there is also a sense of familiarity and comfort in an abusive relationship, which is why victims will often return to an abusive relationship or, leaving one, will unconsciously seek out another."

The United States Library of Medicine outlines the signs of an abusive relationship and states the following, "Leaving an abusive relationship is not easy. You may be afraid your partner will harm you if you leave, or that you will not have the financial or emotional support you need. Domestic violence is not your fault. You cannot stop your partner's abuse. But you can find ways to get help for yourself."

Further Reading on Abusive Relationships:

  • Psychopath Free: Recovering from Emotionally Abusive Relationships With Narcissists, Sociopaths
  • Abuse: Relationship: Emotional Abuse Guide: How to Break Free From an Emotional Abussive Relationship and become Happy again
  • Supporting Information & Resources:

  • Cruise Ship Murders
  • Overboard Deaths

  • Articles Reference to External Sources
    United States Library of Medicine - The signs of an abusive relationship

    Featured or New Cruise Ship Incidents

    Suggested Reading