I had been intending to write another post for today but due to unfortunate events in the US last week felt compelled to write about it. As many of you probably know it was a sad week for the town of Raleigh in North Carolina, in fact it was a sad week for many of us who heard about the unfortunate incidents which occurred. Deah Barakat, his wife Yusor Abu-Salha and her sister Razan Abu-Salha were gunned down during what can only be deemed as an act of terror in the comfort of their own home. The ins and outs of the incident are still under investigation however the events and what followed have captured the hearts of many around the world.
I remember first hearing about the story and feeling my heart just sink, these were three young, beautiful, ambitious, successful (even at such a young age) and outstanding individuals. They had touched the hearts and minds of everyone during their short lives, Deah was a second year dental student, Yusor his wife was due to join her husband and also study dentistry in the fall and her sister Razan was in what was described as a highly competitive architectural study. Just incredible, these were not only three young individuals who were bright, they were pillars in the community, they were hands on in improving the situation in their locality, they volunteered with the homeless, they provided support to friends and neighbours and they put their skills to good use providing relief to Syrian refugees. Achievements that most of us older in years have not even been able to compete with.
If their achievements and legacy wasn’t enough to impress me, I certainly wasn’t prepared for what followed. After any unfortunate bereavement in such circumstances, it is natural to feel pain, anger, grief, rage and hurt amongst other things. I saw the family give a press conference the day after these unfortunate deaths and was blown away by their strength, their composure, their eloquence and most of all the love and mercy they portrayed even though they clearly were grieving so much.
Dr Suzanne Barakat- Deah’s older sister followed the news conference with a couple of TV interviews, she radiated so much strength and compassion which was such a surprise to so many, given that she had just lost three members of her family. Most importantly, she made a point that her family did not want revenge and wanted to ensure their legacy lived on. Every report which she conducted, she left those who interviewed her and those who watched in awe. The fathers who were clearly grieving also demonstrated such humility and compassion in their interviews, a humbling example for us all. It was clearly that both the Barakat and Abu-Salha families had raised their children in an exemplary manner; they’re ambassadors to their faith and to us all. They truly radiate what Islam is about, love, compassion, mutual respect and tolerance to all. In their short time on this earth they left such an amazing legacy. How many of us can say that others would be able to say the same about us? These three individuals personified that an impact a beautiful character and soul can have on those around them. The world lost three amazing people who no doubt would have made this world just a slightly more better place, I felt like I lost someone from my family, a huge statement given the fact I didn’t even know them.
We have so much to learn from these unfortunate actions, I know I certainly have. The family have taught me how to deal with calamity and face adversity. Make the world a better place and remember the impact you have on others in everything you do. We are all ambassadors of our faith should we have one. The way we carry ourselves, our interactions with our friends and neighbours and most importantly the contribution we make to society is all what will be our legacy. We all have a responsibility and duty to carry out their legacy in any way we can. Don’t let the unfortunate deaths of these three amazing individuals go in vain, honour their memory, carry on their legacy and start your own, make your life count for something positive.
“Repel [evil] by that [deed] which is better” [Qur’an: Chapter 41, Verse 34]
Our Three Winners – Facebook Page
Samia is a co-founder and development director of Hijablicious. She will be regularly posting her outfits and sharing her love for fashion.View all Samia posts.