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‘I’m dying to see them:’ Toronto man who misplaced household in airplane shot down by Iranian forces

‘I’m dying to see them:’ Toronto man who misplaced household in airplane shot down by Iranian forces

Habib Haghjoo can’t take a look at the one two pictures in his front room at his east Toronto house. However he can’t convey himself to take them down.

Nothing else hangs on the partitions in that room of his impeccably clear house.

The pictures present his daughter, Saharnaz Haghjoo, 37, and his eight-year-old granddaughter, Elsa Jadidi, smiling broadly as they embrace.

The pair have been aboard a Ukrainian Worldwide Airways flight that was shot down by Iranian forces two years in the past, on Jan. 8, 2020. Greater than 100 of the 176 folks killed within the crash had ties to Canada.


Click to play video: 'Mother, daughter buried in Canada after being killed in Iran plane crash'







Mom, daughter buried in Canada after being killed in Iran airplane crash


Mom, daughter buried in Canada after being killed in Iran airplane crash – Jan 26, 2020

Habib Haghjoo says he feels caught in time, hoping he can have only one extra minute along with his ladies, as he calls them.

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“I’m dying to see them,” he says, tears falling from his eyes as he grips an empty cup of tea. “If I take a look at the image, or convey any reminiscence to my thoughts, it begins to harm deep.”

READ MORE: ‘My coronary heart goes to bleed,’ says Ontario man who misplaced daughter, granddaughter in airplane tragedy

The 65-year-old can’t watch movies of them or leaf by means of outdated photos, saying to take action would harm an excessive amount of.

Household, mates and strangers despatched him pictures of his daughter and granddaughter after their deaths. After some time he tossed all of them aside from the 2 that stay.

“Possibly in the future I’ll put them away, however not proper now,” he says.

He’s nonetheless caught within the throes of his grief.

“I’m caught within the anger stage, I’m simply so indignant,” he says. “The regime murdered them, murdered them within the worst attainable manner.”

READ MORE: Iran ready to carry bilateral talks on downed jet, international ministry says

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Recently, he’s additionally been caught inside his house. Ontario’s newest spherical of pandemic restrictions has left him with out entry to his beloved pool on the native YMCA. The train helped him within the quick aftermath of the tragedy, he says.

“I used to be crying and swimming… it helped loads,” Haghjoo says. “Then the pandemic got here and shut every part down.”

Two years later, the pool is closed once more. He’s misplaced the one manner he can actually train along with his dangerous again. And he misplaced the group there, he says.

“It’s robust,” he says.

READ MORE: Federal authorities establishing scholarship program to honour victims of airplane shot down by Iran

Haghjoo, a pc programmer, left Iran in 1987 for Eire. Someday, whereas ready for a gathering, he visited the Canadian Embassy.

He learn a duplicate of the Constitution of Rights and Freedoms and fell in love. After 4 years in Eire, he, his spouse and his 4 daughters left for Canada. They settled in Richmond Hill, Ont.

He landed in the midst of a recession and it was troublesome to seek out work in his area, so he took a job at a automobile dealership.

In 1997, his spouse, Shahnaz, died of a uncommon case of meningitis at 37, the identical age his daughter was when she died.

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“I attempted to be one of the best father and one of the best mom I might be,” he says.

By 2009, exhausted from his job on the automobile dealership, he left and have become an actual property agent, which afforded him extra versatile hours.

He hasn’t labored because the airplane crash. He says he isn’t prepared.

“I’m not wealthy, however I will pay my payments,” he says.

He’s depressed and anxious. He forgets what he was saying. He eats little.

However he has managed just a few issues prior to now two years. He and Siamak Jadidi, Saharnaz’s husband, helped construct an elementary faculty in Elsa’s title in a poor a part of Iran, in Lorestan province.

READ MORE: ‘We’re in search of the reality’: Ontario father of Iran airplane tragedy sufferer seeks solutions, 1 yr later

“I imagine when persons are educated, they received’t get fooled by rulers and brought benefit of,” he says.”`Constructing a college and educating youngsters, that’s what’s going to win ultimately. That’s how I’ll get revenge.”

He additionally helps translate information articles to English for a web site began by one other household who misplaced family members within the tragedy. The location, Rissmaan.com, highlights human rights abuses in Iran.

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Haghjoo used to practise Islam however gave up faith. He visited his daughter and granddaughter’s graves twice after the airplane crash however then stopped going. This previous summer season, nonetheless, he discovered himself drawn again to the cemetery and has since visited a handful of instances.

“After I end my go to, I can’t open my eyes as a result of I’m crying a lot,” he says, “but it surely does assist, it does.”


Habib Haghjoo is photographed at his Toronto house on Tuesday, January 4, 2022. The previous pc programmer misplaced his daughter Sahar Haghjoo and her eight-year-old daughter Elsa Jadidi within the 2020 downing of Ukraine Worldwide Airways flight PS752 by Iranian forces.


THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Younger

Two years after the tragedy, Haghjoo says he tries to give attention to his household — he has 4 daughters and eight grandchildren, he’ll by no means cease counting Saharnaz and Elsa amongst them, he says.

His companion of 15 years can also be an incredible assist.

And he tries to give attention to the great reminiscences of his daughter and granddaughter.

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“Saharnaz was my infant, she was very small, very petite, she was like a small pepper that’s very popular, she was very energetic,” he says. His daughter labored as a program supervisor on the YWCA, serving to new immigrant girls modify to the nation.

“And Elsa, she was a helper identical to her mother, she was going to be a fierce, sturdy lady.”

He smiles at these reminiscences.

Then his face modifications.

“Typically I really feel my daughter hugging me,” Haghjoo says, his voice catching. “I can really feel her squeezing me, hugging me. The great reminiscences are additionally generally very painful.”


Habib Haghjoo is photographed at his Toronto house on Tuesday, January 4, 2022. The previous pc programmer misplaced his daughter Sahar Haghjoo and her eight-year-old daughter Elsa Jadidi within the 2020 downing of Ukraine Worldwide Airways flight PS752 by Iranian forces.


THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Younger




© 2022 The Canadian Press

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