Loved ones of Lion Air crash victims share their stories of love and loss
Some of them still remain in hope that their loved ones will come back to them...
We are all aware of the recent Lion Air accident. The airplane, which seated 189 people bound for Pangkal Pinang from Jakarta, lost contact 13 minutes after take off. Sadly, the plane crashed into the ocean, killing every single passenger on board.
During a tragic accident like this, what adds to the heartache are the stories of victims’ loved one. These are stories of love, and desperate hope, such as the three tales presented below.
A “bad omen” happened before the flight
On 27 Oct 2018, mummy Sukartini discovered that a zebra dove had flown into a water tank in her house. She rescued the bird and housed it in a cage so it could recover.
Unbeknownst to her, the same fate befell her only daughter, Alfiani Hidayati Solikah, except that she was not so lucky.
Alfiani had barely started her role as a flight attendant for Lion Air two months ago. Her house has plunged into doom ever since news broke out that all 189 passengers may have perished in the tragedy. Slamet, her dad deliberately avoids watching the news on TV. And Sukartini believes to this day that the innocent bird falling into the water was an omen of what was to happen.
When a work trip becomes your last
Another victim was a close neighbour of one of theAsianparent Indonesia’s writers.
Maria Ulfah, aged 36, is a mum to a seven-year-old son. They live with Maria’s husband in Lebak Bulus, Jakarta.
On the morning of the fateful flight, Maria was scheduled for a work trip, flying from Jakarta to Pangkal Pinang. Her own mum wished her a safe flight, but little did she know that those were her last words – and her last chance – to talk to her daughter alive.
Upon seeing the news of the Lion air accident, her worst nightmares had come to life. Her tears have not stopped flowing upon learning of her daughter’s fate.
At present, Maria’s husband still waits in hope and anguish for a miracle…
“I won’t leave without taking my husband back with me”
Siti Nuraini was the wife of the late Ahmad Endang Rokhmana, another victim of the recent lion air accident. She travelled to Jakarta’s International Container Terminal 2 from West Java to look for items her husband owned.
The harbour is the initial location where staff from the National Search and Rescue Agency (Basarnas) leave any items, as well as any of the victims’ remains, from the fateful Lion Air JT610 flight on Monday.
The items are later brought to Kramatjati Police Hospital in East Jakarta.
“I’m looking for my husband’s ID cards. I want to see the proof Basarnas could find,” said Siti.
With Siti were her kids and in-laws.
“I want some certain news as soon as possible. Whatever happens, I want to bring my husband home to Tasikmalaya,” she said.
Siti’s husband, Endang, worked as a civil servant in Indonesia’s Finance Ministry. He was based in Pangkalpinang and only returned home once in two weeks to reunite with his family.
Authorities hard at work to identify victims
Sadly, it’s now confirmed that there were no survivors of the crash.
Arthur Tampi is the National Police Medical and Health Center’s Head (Indonesia). On Tuesday, 30 October 2018, he said that the disaster victim identification (DVI) team managed to gather 147 DNA samples and 185 objects belonging to the deceased from the victims’ loved ones.
Unfortunately, it takes time to process such antemortem data. Mr Tampi urges families of the deceased to remain patient, since “it is harder for us to identify body parts than intact remains”. After all, he says that it takes more time to link DNA samples with victims’ remains compared to fingerprinting and visual identification.
Here at theAsianparent, we hope the families of the victims find closure soon.