Oakville honours those who perished on Flight 752

Flight 752
Oakville honours those who perished on Flight 752
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Nolan A Machan

Nolan A Machan

Nolan Machan is the Publisher of OakvilleNews.Org and has over 41 years of local Oakville knowledge. He is committed to providing Oakville residents with the most up-to-date information about our great town.

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For many of us watching in horror as Iranian missiles flew into Iraqi military bases as a response to the US killing of the Iranian military leader Qasem Soleimani, little did we know that Ukranian Flight 752 was mistakenly shot down as it took off from Terhan’s International Airport.

On Ukrainian Flight 752 there were 176 people who perished, 54 of those were Canadian citizens, and 138 people were traveling onto Canada. None of those who perished were from Oakville. However, Oakville does have a significant Persian community.

“When I read about the victims, I felt I knew all of them deeply in my heart, even if I had never met any one of them. While I was watching their pictures and stories in the media, I saw myself. I saw my daughters, my brother, my father, my mother. My heart was filled with so much pain and sorrow by thinking that all those bright dreams and futures are gone now. I felt I have died with them. That day when I talked to my friend, Bita, I saw that she is feeling the same. When I looked at the social media messages, I felt all of us are feeling the same. So my friend and I decided to bring us together to sympathize with those who have lost their loved ones, their friends, their family members and their relatives. Your sorrow is our sorrow, your pain is our pain. Your loss is our loss,” commented Hanieh Fakhrian.

Bita and her friend Hanieh along with the Town of Oakville organized a Candlelight Vigil to honour those who perished on Flight 752. Oakville’s vigil took place on Sunday, January 12, 2020 in Centennial Square.

“Hopefully by being by each other’s side, we can find the strength to endure this heavy pain,” stated Bita about what she hoped the vigil would accomplish.

Video Credit: Marc Grant – Oakville Town Councillor – Ward 5

Bita’s speech from the Vigil for Flight 752 Victims

“We are gathered today, in loving memory of our family members, friends, coworkers, neighbors, in one word, our compatriots, who lost their lives in the tragic airplane crash in Iran.

We are all deeply saddened, heartbroken and wounded for the people whose lives have been cut short, for the families that are now broken and for the bright dreams that have faded.

Words simply cannot express the grief that the souls of our hearts are bearing across the community.

At this difficult time, our thoughts go out to the friends and families of the victims.

Sara! Shahla! Saloomeh! Alireza! Neda! McMaster fellows! and whoever else who I may not know personally, but are suffering, we will have to get through this terrible pain together as a community.

کجاست مرثیه سازی که نوحه ساز کند/
برای این همه مادر که داغدار شدند
بیا بنفشه بکاریم دسته دسته کبود/
به یاد باغچه هایی که بی بهار شدند
خبر درست، خبر سنگدل، خبر این بود؛
پرنده ها همه در آسمان غبار شدند…


Bring the reciter of elegies for mourning mothers and
Plant fields of black pansies in memory of blooms unable to witness spring
The News is correct, cruel and heartless
The one that talks about the birds turning into nothing but a haze

On behalf of Halton Persian Community, I deeply appreciate the support that Town of Oakville provided to us to be able to arrange this gathering in such a short notice. Thank you!”

“On Sunday, Town Council and I gathered at Centennial Square with hundreds of members of the Oakville community to pay respects to all those who lost their lives in the destruction by Iranian forces of Ukrainian Airlines flight 752 on take off last week from Tehran. The peaceful candlelight ceremony was an opportunity for Oakville to mourn together. It was a true display of Oakville’s sense of community,” commented Oakville Mayor Rob Burton.

Flight 752 Candlelight Vigil

Photo credit: Brian Gray Photography


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