Pope John Paul II crucifix crushes pilgrim 3 days before canonization

A 98-foot crucifix constructed to honor Pope John Paul II's 1998 visit to a small town in northern Italy collapsed Thursday and killed a visitor three days before the late pope is set to be canonized.

The Italian news agency ANSA reported that the 21-year-old victim was visiting the 1,320-pound sculpture near the town of Brescia with a group of young Catholics. The news agency reported that another person was taken to the hospital. The BBC reported that a group of children witnessed the incident.

Pictures on ANSA's website appear to show the crucifix somehow splintered.

The Polish-born pope, who died in 2005, is set to be canonized this weekend.

Reuters reported that on Wednesday, a group of vandals threw paint on a stone memorial commemorating the pope in southern Poland.

The Associated Press reported that back in 2004 a 72-year-old woman was crushed by a 7-foot metal crucifix in a town in southern Italy.