Condolences To The Families Of Flight PS752

I am very sorry to hear about the tragedy of this air disaster and the immense loss of life that has taken place and affected many people in Canada and the world over.

As many of you know, one of the key characters of one of my books, Monique Defleur has origins from Ukraine (the character's father had been from Ukraine and her mother having been French Canadian).

This actually resulted from my having had a couple of Ukrainian friends during my youth. Very passionate people in the sense of their zest for life and commitment to fairness. Something I tried very much to reflect in the character Monique (who took her mother's last name in an effort to rebel against her dad in order to get his attention before leaving home at eighteen, though that's another story).

Her innocence and goodness are very apparent in the story though she very much reflects the experiences I had with my friends from Ukraine when I was around eleven years old and still in public school in Willowdale, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

So hearing of this disaster I couldn't help but feel for my friends from school years that have passed so long ago, and through them for the losses of the families on that flight. Many of them Canadian as well.

In addition, two decades ago while working for a particular gig in the West End of Toronto, I befriended an Iranian woman who'd been a victim of spousal abuse. A woman I urged to seek help or counselling. Through her courage, she managed to get free of the situation despite the fact that many in the community were more supportive of her abusive spouse, which I feel is wrong. Another case of society turning its back on women to the subjugation of men who do not regard them as equals.

So this courageous (Iranian) woman faced her worst fears and fled her spouse by herself and began an entirely new life, while most other people opposed her despite the fact that she used to show up to work with black eyes at least twice a week. Yes, she would come to work wearing sunglasses to hide her bruises. Her situation was very similar to another woman I'd come to know as well who was from Romania, both of whom proved to be an inspiration for the character Rysalin in another one of my books: Stories From The End.

So when I hear of things like this. Of this loss of life that involves these people. It hits me in a soft spot that I have for them, despite the shallow rants of which I'm capable though this isn't about me.

It's about those people that inspired me who'd been through situations and challenges that I can barely begin to grasp and for people to whom they're connected to have suddenly been snuffed out by the fall of a bird that lost its ability to fly.

Very sad indeed.

Maybe their tragedy will give pause long enough to the world before we descend into the madness of another war?

Perhaps that might be their testimony?

My deepest condolences to the lost and having lost,

Brian Joseph Johns