Malaysia Airlines MH17: What we know about the victims

News is trickling out from around the world about the 298 people killed in the Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 tragedy. The victims include an internationally renowned AIDS researcher, British soccer fans and a rescue helicopter pilot from South Africa.

Victims include renowned AIDS researcher, Dutch senator and tourists

Flight MH17 victims

8 years ago
Duration 2:55
CBC's Natasha Fatah has information about the people on board Flight MH17, including a connection to the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370

News is trickling out from around the world about the 298 people killed in the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 tragedy. The victims include an internationally renowned AIDS researcher, British soccer fans, a South African rescue helicopter pilot and a Dutch senator.

Among the most heartbreaking aspects of this disaster is an Australian family that is believed to have lost two loved ones in this latest incident after two other family members disappeared on the mysterious Malaysia Airlines flight four months ago.

Here's a look at what we've learned so far about the lives lost in the plane crash in eastern Ukraine. There have been some discrepancies over the past few days due to the dual nationalities of some of the victims.

The Canadian victim of downed MH17 has been identified as Andrei Anghel, 24, of Ontario. (Facebook)


A lone Canadian was on board the downed flight: Andrei Anghel, 24 of Ajax, Ont.

A 2012 University of Waterloo graduate of the biomedical science program, Anghel was en route to Bali, Indonesia, for vacation, his father told CBC News.

According to his LinkedIn profile, Anghel was pursuing further education at a Romanian university, the Iuliu Hatieganu University of Medicine and Pharmacy.


Two-thirds of the passengers on the Kuala Lumpur-bound flight departing from Amsterdam were from the Netherlands, at 193.

The most prominent is Joep Lange, a clinical researcher specializing in HIV therapy, who was en route to Melbourne for the 20th International AIDS conference, which begins Sunday.

His death shocked the world of AIDS research, where he is seen as a giant in the field. He's known for his tireless advocacy of giving HIV-positive patients in poor countries access to affordable drugs.

"Joep was a man who knew no barriers," Amsterdam's Academic Medical Centre hospital said in a statement. "He was a great inspiration for everybody who wanted to do something about the AIDS tragedy in Africa and Asia."

His colleague, Jacqueline van Tongeren, was also believed to have died on the flight, as well as a World Health Organization spokesman travelling to the conference. 

Dutch Sen. Willem Witteveen was also on MH17. He was a member of the Labour Party and had taught law at the University of Tilburg since 1990.

Another Dutchman, Richard van Vreeswijk, posted a heart-rending entry on Facebook about his young son, Huub, who died in the crash. 

"Huub was to start driving lessons," said van Vreeswijk. "My heart bleeds and bleeds and bleeds at the thought of what he will never do and will never see."



Malaysia Airlines listed the nationality of MH17 passengers as:

193 Dutch (including 1 dual American/Dutch citizen)
42 Malaysians.
27 Australians.
12 Indonesians.
10 Britons (including 1 dual UK/S. Africa citizen)
4 Germans.
4 Belgians.
3 Filipinos.
1 Canadian.
1 New Zealander.

Source: Malaysia Airlines

One of the most poignant tragedies of the crash is an Australia family who lost a son and daughter-in-law on the missing MH370 flight and now believes they've lost two more family members in this latest Malaysia Airlines crash.

Kaylene Mann lost brother Rod Burrows and sister-in-law Mary in the March disappearance of Flight MH370. Now a step-daughter, Maree Rizk and her husband, Albert, of Melbourne are believed to have also been killed.

"It's just brought everyone, everything back," said Greg Burrows, the brother of Rod and Kaylene, to Australia's Courier Mail. "It's just ... ripped our guts again."

Twenty-seven of those on board Flight MH17 were Australian. Also among them were a grandfather and his three grandchildren who were en route home after a family holiday.


Emotions were raw in the southeast Asian country where residents are still reeling over the March catastrophe for the state-owned airline. The government reached out to the next of kin of the 42 Malaysians killed in the crash. 

The mother of the chief steward aboard the flight, Mohamad Ghafar Abu Bakar, pleaded for pictures of the wreckage showing bodies to not be published.

“As a mother, my feelings are already crushed when I received this tragic news, only God knows what I am going through as a mother," Maimon Sarpan told the News Straits Times.

Another Malaysian on board the ill-fated plane was an instructor from the Sabah University of Malaysia. 

Ng Shi Ing, 33, taught English as a second language and had just presented a working paper at a conference in Belgium. The university described her as having a "friendly and cheerful disposition." She was accompanied by her one-year-old baby and a sister. 


The Jakarta Post listed the names of the 12 Indonesian victims. One was an infant, but beyond that little more is currently known. 


Two of the 10 Britons — John Alder and Liam Sweeney — killed in the crash were en route to see their beloved Newcastle United team play in New Zealand.

The North East club issued a statement calling Sweeney and Alder "two of the club's most loyal supporters."

"Both men were familiar faces at every Newcastle United away game," the statement quoted in the Daily Mail said.

Former BBC journalist Glenn Thomas was also among the dead. He was one the many passengers en route to the AIDS conference in Australia in his current role as media officer for the World Health Organization in Geneva.

Colleagues described Thomas to BBC News as a "wonderful person and a great professional," and as a journalist, "he was always passionate about telling the stories that mattered."


Of the four Germans on board the plane, so far, there's information about only one of them. 

An Australian outlet reports that Fatima Dyczynski, a 24-year-old aerospace engineer, was expected to arrive in Perth, where her parents were waiting. She was planning to move there for an internship with IBM, her parents told Perth Now. 

South African

A rescue helicopter pilot who recently moved to Malaysia with his family to spend more time with them was also among the dead. 

Cameron Dalziel, 43, was married with two sons, ages four and 14. The South Africa-born pilot, who was apparently flying with a U.K. passport, worked for years as a rescue helicopter pilot in Mozambique. 

He's reportedly flown choppers all around the world and after 10 years of being away from his family, he was moving to Malaysia to start an operation there so they could see each other more.

Dalziel's brother-in-law, Shane Hattingh, said Dalziel's wife, Reine, is so traumatized she can't even speak. 

"She is basically there [in Malaysia] alone other than with new friends," he said. "It's crazy. ... The kids are going to be absolutely shattered."


In a speech on Friday, U.S. President Barack Obama said at least one American is among the 298 whose "innocent lives were taken" in the crash.

Quinn Lucas Schansman was a dual Dutch-American citizen. A Facebook profile that appears to be his says the young man was studying international business at Amsterdam's University of Applied Sciences.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with his family for this terrible loss," said Obama.

With files from The Associated Press


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