KUALA LUMPUR - Every time he is asked about his wife, Hamfazlin Sham Mohamed Arifin, the Malaysia Airlines (MAS) stewardess who died in the MH17 crash in Ukraine last year, Mohd Tarmizi Ismail will feel the agony of his loss.
Almost a year later, the father to Alif Hazim, three, and Alif Haiqal, nine, admitted he still could not hide his sadness when asked those questions that forced him to relive the dark moments following the July 17 tragedy.
"I am grateful to be surrounded by caring people who look out for my family. Although I have to go on with life, it sometimes hurts when I have to relive the moments of the tragedy," he told Bernama here yesterday.
Hamfazlin was among 298 crew members and passengers killed in the disaster while the aircraft was en route to Kuala Lumpur from Amsterdam.
The victims of the Boeing 777-200 that crashed after it was shot down in Donetsk, Ukraine, included 44 Malaysians while the rest were Dutch, Australian, Indonesian, British, German, Belgian, Philippine, Canadian and New Zealand nationals.
A day of mourning was held last Aug 22 for the nation to pay its last respects to the victims.
On Saturday, Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said a special ceremony will be held at Bunga Raya Complex, Kuala Lumpur International Airport, to commemorate the first anniversary of the tragedy.
Mohd Tarmizi said his elder son understood why Hamfazlin was no longer present.
"Only my younger son who is just learning to talk, constantly asks me 'where is mother', 'when is mother coming home?'," he said, adding that each week he would take his sons to visit Hamfazlin's grave.
He hoped the authorities would speed up the investigations into the crash and always keep the victims' family members informed.
Meanwhile, the family members of MH17 pilot Wan Amran Wan Hussin have accepted his fate.
According to his nephew, Amaluddin Noorshah, 49, he was constantly in touch with Wan Amran's wife and children, who lived in Shah Alam, to give them moral support.
"Each time there is a family gathering, we feel his absence, especially now that it is almost Raya, as he used to handle everything (preparations).
"We accept this test, but only that we hope the investigation report (on the MH17 crash) will be announced soon," he said.