Prithula Rashid, co-pilot of the US-Bangla aircraft that crashed in Nepal on Monday, lived out the dream of her parents, a dream that she too had embraced as a child; she grew up to be a pilot.
“Flying was what she loved and she embraced fear as a part of the job,” said Zuhayr Bari, a student of Arirang Flying School, the same school Prithula had gotten her license from. She was in the third batch and all the instructors speak highly of her.
When Zuhayr was facing a dilemma on whether to join flying school or not, it was Prithula who extended all her support. “She told me to dream, but most importantly to turn those dreams into reality,” he said.
“She was very kind and one of our sweetest students,” said Waqar Ahmed, a teacher of Prithula's at Adroit International School.
The woman, who was the first female pilot of US-Bangla, was very down-to-earth, full of life and optimistic, said her maternal uncle Asikur Rahman Sabuj at Prithula's house in the capital's Mirpur DOHS yesterday.
Her grandfather flew to Nepal and identified the body. The Mirpur residence, full of relatives and neighbours, seemed to be reeling from shock.
There are families of other victims, who are grappling to reconcile with their great loss; some still refuse to believe that their loved ones are gone. Some, on the other hand, are trying to keep the sadness aside, to get back their son or son-in-law, daughter or daughter-in-law who was travelling with the now deceased.
With burn injuries, Rezwanul Haque Shaon and Imrana Kabir Hashi are undergoing treatment. Their families have kept the deaths of their spouses secret from them.
Regaining his senses at the intensive care unit of Om Hospital and Research Centre in Nepal, Shaon asked where his wife Tahira Tanvin Shashi was. His father Mozammel Haque told him she was in another hospital, said his mother Sabiha Sultana.
The couple had planned to celebrate their marriage anniversary in Nepal where Shashi, only daughter of her parents, met her tragic death.
Imrana Kabir Hashi, of Tangail, is fighting for her life with 30 percent burns at the ICU of Norvic International Hospital in Kathmandu. Her husband Rakibul died in the crash. The couple who, married in 2012, loved to travel, said Hashi's father Humayun Kabir.
“My daughter's joy was snatched away with the death of Rakibul,” he said. Now the family prays for her recovery and safe return.
Similarly, Almun Nahar Annie was travelling with her husband FH Priok and three-year-old daughter Tamarra Prionmoyee. Annie was the only one who survived the crash.
At the hospital, she asked about her husband and child. Her father said she had not been told what happened to them.
Priok, a professional photographer who won an award at the Bengal Image National Photo Contest 2016, was the only child of his parents, his cousin Tajul Islam said. Priok's mother is now left all alone, as his father died five years ago. Since she heard of the incident, she kept losing consciousness every now and then.
Family members of Khwaza Hossain Mohammad Shafi, one of the two crew members of the aircraft, were wishing for a miracle when a Daily Star correspondent met them at their house in the capital's Niketon. Shafi's mother learned that there had been a plane crash but believed in her heart that her son would come back home.
Shafi was declared to be among the dead. He was a passionate lover of flying. He loved his job, his family members said. His sister flew to Nepal yesterday to bring his body back.
Married for a year to another cabin crew member of US-Bangla Airlines, Shafi and his wife used to fly together. On the day the crash, his wife was off duty and so Shafi flew alone – leaving behind his wife and family forever.