Hundreds gather for Sisto’s funeral. Picture: David Caird
Hundreds gather for Sisto’s funeral. Picture: David Caird

Hundreds gather for Sisto’s funeral

Hundreds of people are set to farewell beloved Melbourne restaurant owner, Sisto Malaspina, who was killed in the Bourke Street terror attack this month.

The 74-year-old co-owner of Pellegrini's Espresso Bar was well known and loved by many locals after spending decades feeding hungry Melburnians.

A state-funded funeral for Mr Malaspina will be held at East Melbourne's St Patrick's Cathedral at 10.30am today.

Mourners gather at St Patrick’s Cathedral for the funeral. Picture: Jay Town
Mourners gather at St Patrick’s Cathedral for the funeral. Picture: Jay Town

Family members and the Governor of Victoria Linda Dessau, are among those expected to pay tribute to Mr Malaspina, whose stabbing death prompted an outpouring of grief across Australia.

Mr Malaspina was killed and two other men were injured on November 9 when 30-year-old Hassan Khalif Shire Ali drove a burning ute into the city and launched a knife attack.

Police shot Shire Ali who later died in hospital.

Premier of Victoria Daniel Andrews arrives at the funeral. Picture: Michael Dodge/Getty Images
Premier of Victoria Daniel Andrews arrives at the funeral. Picture: Michael Dodge/Getty Images

In the days following the tragedy hundreds of cards, flowers and gifts began to pile up outside of Pellegrini's, as a constant flow of mourners visited the restaurant to pay their respects.

A book of condolence was also placed outside the location for devastated customers to sign.

Photos from inside St Patrick's Cathedral show the seats packed with people gathered to mourn the loss of Mr Malaspina.

A coffee maker, cups, bags of coffee and a letter from his staff were placed out the front of the Cathedral in honour of the 74-year-old.

Premier Daniel Andrews, who made the offer of a state funeral to his family, said Mr Malaspina was a "Victorian icon, known and loved by us all".

Mr Andrews tweeted last week that the service would "be an opportunity to celebrate this remarkable Victorian, who brought love, life, colour and flavour to our city".


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