The Serbians were outraged to learn about this. June 28 was thedate on which Serbia had been conquered by the Ottoman Empirein 1389. On the very same date in 1912, Serbia had a last freeditself from Turkish rule. But Bosnia, home to many Serbs, wasstill ruled by Austria-Hungary. Now Francis Fernindand, heir tothe Austrian throne, had chosen June 28 to come to Bosnia! “Ourdecision was taken almost immediately,” recalled one of the group.“Death to the tyrant!”
Among the group was a youth of 19, named GavirloPrincip. Princip’s family were Serb farmers who made a meagerliving in Bosnia. Having grown up under Austrian rule, he felt thathe must take action against the oppressors.Princip joined Unity or Death, a terrorist group commonly known.
Gavirlo is getting ready to to kill the duke and getting the grenade ready
despite the failure of his co-conspirators, GavriloPrincip held firm to his plan. He stayed near the route the motorcade wouldfollow later in the day.
Horrified guards hurled themselves upon the killer. It was toolate- the royal couple had been struck. According to one witness, thearchduke gasped, “Sophie, Sophie, don’t die. Stay alive for the children!”Within minutes, both were dead.
At his trial, Princip stood by his deed. His only regret, he said, was killing a woman. Becausehe was under 20 years of age, he was not executed. He died in prison of tuberculosis in 1918.For Europe, the punishment was more severe. The Archduke and his wife were the first victims of a war thatkilled millions.