VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — Among the 63 Canadians who died in the plane crash near Tehran, several were from B.C.’s Lower Mainland.
The plane was carrying 176 people when it crashed near the Iranian capital of Tehran on Wednesday, killing everyone on board. A total of 138 passengers aboard the plane were connecting to Canada, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said in a news conference.
Many on the flight were students and researchers at Canadian universities, while some may have been working in the country under temporary visas, meaning they would not be included among official lists of Canadians. The residency status of all the passengers is not yet clear.
A Vancouver-area family has been identified as being among those killed in the plane crash. Ardalan Ebnoddin-Hamidi, Niloo Far Razzehi, and their son, Kamyar Ebnoddin Hamidi, were visiting Iran on vacation for two weeks and had been on their way back from that trip.
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Delaram Dadashnejad, a student from Langara College, was also on the flight. She was flying back to Vancouver after visiting her family in Tehran.
In a statement, Langara’s president Lane Trotter offered condolences to Dadashnejad’s family and friends.
“The loss of one of our students is one that impacts our entire community,” the statement read. “We are heartbroken over the fatal tragedy that took place; our thoughts and prayers are with those in mourning from this incident.”
Meanwhile, a brother and sister living in Toronto, and who were both former students at the University of British Columbia, were also identified as victims of the tragedy.
Zeynab Asadi Lari had been enrolled at UBC since 2016 in the Bachelor of Science program, majoring in biology. Mohammadhossein Asadi Lari graduated in 2018 with a Bachelor of Science.
“This is a challenging time for UBC’s Iranian students, faculty and staff and we understand developments internationally and domestically in Iran are a cause of deep concern for them,” UBC President Santa J. Ono said on Wednesday.
The names of North Vancouver’s Mohammad Hossein Saket and Fatemeh Kazerani also on the flight list, as were the names of Dr. Firouzeh Madani and Dr. Naser Pourshabanoshibi.
Premier John Horgan called the crash devastating.
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“As we wait for answers about what happened, we join with nations around the world that are mourning this tragic loss of life. We share in their grief,” he said in a statement.
It’s unclear what caused the crash. The plane is said to have been in the air for a few minutes before it went down shortly after take off.
-With files from the Canadian Press