Holey Artisan tragedy

July 1, a day to remember our hero Faraaz, and heroes who continue to inspire us

Faraaz Ayaaz Hossain
Faraaz Ayaaz Hossain
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Today marks 4 years since the terrorist attack at the Holey Artisan Bakery. We find ourselves in a moment of darkness yet again. A pandemic has crippled not just Bangladesh, but the entire world.

Such unprecedented times of darkness call for heroes that shine the path ahead for the rest of us. We are able to continue moving forward with confidence from those who rise to the challenge.

We, Faraaz’s family, look upon the impact he has left behind with a sense of immense pride. Faraaz has been a moral compass, the spirit of courage, friendship and humanity that continues to inspire us. An example of a core human value, to stand up for others in times of peril, no matter how daunting the consequence – even if that means laying down your life in a selfless act of bravery.

With Faraaz’s spirit in our hearts, today as we, humanity, fight the battle of COVID-19, we salute the fearless heroes of our country who continue to serve the nation. It is because of those who are selflessly and courageously carrying out their responsibilities towards others and to the country, that we are able to keep ourselves afloat during these troubling times.

July 1 was intended by the terrorists to be remembered as one of the most terrifying nights in our history, but Faraaz’s valiant sacrifice changed the narrative to one of courage.

Our doctors, nurses, policemen, those carrying out social initiatives, and every individual on the front lines are the heroes that are helping us navigate through this crisis, the heroes who continue doing their part in standing by those in need. Doctors and nurses have lost their lives to the pandemic, in their tireless effort to save lives. The police continue to serve the people. A multitude of organisations have carried out relief initiatives for those in dire need. Even the neighborhood shopkeepers who had stayed open to be there for their communities have stepped up to support their communities. They will always be remembered as the brave souls who fought till the end to serve the people of Bangladesh.

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July 1 was intended by the terrorists to be remembered as one of the most terrifying nights in our history, but Faraaz’s valiant sacrifice changed the narrative to one of courage. By staying back to protect his friends, he showed us that true heroes rise in the face of extreme danger. Times of distress show one’s true colours, and COVID-19 has brought every part of our society together in a united fight to make it through.

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In the midst of COVID-19, it is without a doubt, that we are shaken by fear but most of all by uncertainty of what the future may entail. As we dream of the day the dust settles, we can today proudly say that our heroes give us a reason to keep going forward, they give us hope. By staying back to protect his friends, Faraaz’s valiant act changed the entire narrative of July 1, displaying an example of what a youth of Bangladesh can do. Today, our heroes serving the nation during this paralysing pandemic give us hope for a brighter tomorrow.

July 1 has been the day to remember Faraaz’s heroic sacrifice, and in the same spirit, it should be a day for us to celebrate the heroes who continue to inspire us.

Zaraif Ayaat Hossain is an Emory University alumni and elder brother of Faraaz Ayaaz Hossain

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