Athlete dead in shipwreck left Pakistan to help disabled son

Athlete dead in shipwreck left Pakistan to help disabled son
Athlete dead in shipwreck left Pakistan to help disabled son

QUETTA, Pakistan (AP) — A Pakistani nationwide soccer group participant who died in a migrant shipwreck off of Italy’s southern coast launched into the voyage to discover medical remedy for her disabled 3-year-old son, her sister and a buddy mentioned Saturday. Hospitals had informed her that help abroad might be her solely possibility.

Shahida Raza, who additionally performed for Pakistan’s nationwide discipline hockey group and was from Quetta in southwestern Baluchistan province, was one among a minimum of 67 individuals who perished in the shipwreck. The overcrowded picket boat they had been touring in broke aside in tough waters in the Ionian Sea off of Calabria earlier than daybreak final Sunday.

The boat that set sail from the Turkish port of Izmir carried individuals from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran and different international locations searching for a greater high quality of life in Europe. In accordance to survivor accounts, the vessel had 170 or extra passengers earlier than the tragedy occurred.

Raza’s sister, Sadia, mentioned Shahida’s makes an attempt to to migrate had one motive: “She solely wished her three-year-old disabled son to transfer, chortle and cry like different youngsters,” Sadia informed The Related Press. “Shahida’s sole dream was the remedy of her disabled baby. She risked her personal life after hospitals in Pakistan informed her that abroad medical support might be the one possibility.”

The boy, Hassan, was not on the boat and remained in Pakistan. He suffered mind harm as a child and can be paralyzed on one facet of his physique, from head to toe. It was not clear how Shahida supposed to help him by touring abroad and leaving him behind.

“She was a courageous girl, as robust as a person,” mentioned Sadia. “My sister obtained her son handled on the Aga Khan Hospital in Karachi. She was informed that if he was taken overseas, there might presumably be good remedy.”

Aga Khan authorities had been unable to touch upon Shahida’s case. Sadia mentioned Shahida additionally approached Quetta’s Mixed Army Hospital, which additionally mentioned it might do nothing for her son.

“What a mom does for her youngsters, no person else can. Shahida at all times wished to deal with issues on her personal,” she mentioned. We’re pleased with our sister.”

Pakistanis have paid tribute to Shahida throughout the nation and in her village.

Images of her donning the nation’s nationwide colours and sporting accolades have appeared on TV screens and social media, though it was reported that most individuals got here to know of her after her dying as ladies’s sports activities aren’t extensively televised in Pakistan. Native media additionally quoted her household as saying she had beforehand spoken in regards to the lack of acknowledgement and recognition for her achievements.

Pakistani President Arif Alvi on Friday mentioned Raza’s tragedy had “deeply moved” him because the nation had failed to present her son with medical services.

The president, who was talking at a world convention on cerebral palsy, mentioned the skilled coaching of well being consultants and an inclusive method from society was very important for accommodating individuals with disabilities.

Shahida’s buddy, Sumiya Mushtaq, mentioned the 29-year-old athlete usually expressed her concern about her baby’s well being.

“The lack to get cured of the illness at native hospitals compelled her to discover a higher future for her son overseas,” she mentioned.

Her household in Pakistan on Saturday was nonetheless awaiting the repatriation of her physique.


Related Press author Adil Jawad contributed to this report from Karachi, Pakistan.

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