'My son appeared as if he was sleeping,' says father of Lumut helicopter crash victim

SITIAWAN: The father of one of the victims in the Lumut helicopter crash has accepted the fate of his son, who died in the crash today.

Mohd Termizi Abdul Ghani, 68, the father of Warrant Officer Mohd Shahrizan Mohd Termizi, 41, said that his son looked calm as if he was sleeping during the identification process, earlier.

Mohd Termizi added that he was also informed about the incident by one of his children while on a work trip in Ipoh this morning.

"When I received the news, I thought that the helicopter that Along (Mohd Shahrizan) was involved in a minor accident and (I thought) that he would return to Lumut. I kept praying that he was safe.

"On my way (to the location), I received many phone calls before being informed that my son was no longer with us and it was really sad (for me) but I accepted the situation as my son left while serving the country.

"I also accepted the sad news calmly as I know that my son's job was risky and death can happen anywhere," he said when met at his house in Taman Bunga Tanjong, Lekir,here today.

He said he identified his son's body twice at the Lumut RMN military hospital alongside his wife, Hasnah Yasin, 67.

He added that her daughter-in-law, Noor Ain Mohammad Ariffin, 41, and three grandchildren aged between 15 to 21 also calmly accepted the fate.

"I saw my son's calm face as if sleeping and I was informed that the he had injuries to the legs and arms.

"My son's body will be taken to the Raja Permaisuri Bainun Hospital in Ipoh for post-mortem examination and the remains will be buried at the Islamic Cemetery near Batu 10 Lekir once all the arrangements are completed," he said, adding that the burial location is near to Mohd Shahrizan's house.

Meanwhile, Mohd Termizi added that he arrived at the Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) base at about noon today before being briefed on the incident.

Mohd Termizi, who is also a retired civil servant, said that his son had served in RMN for over 20 years and had just completed a course for a promotion to the rank of Warrant Officer I.

At the same time, he said that Mohd Shahrizan's passing was deeply felt and described his son as a good, responsible person who cared deeply for those around him and was loved by the whole family.

"The late Shahrizan also often visited us at home and the last time I saw him was last Saturday when he talked as usual and did not show any changes.

"He was also close to both my wife and I. During Hari Raya this year, we were able to gather together which was rare in previous years. This was the most meaningful and the last memory we had together.

"Mohd Shahrizan was among 10 crew members who died following a collision between two helicopters this morning.

The helicopters, an Agusta Westland AW139 Maritime Operations Helicopter (HOM) and a Eurocopter Fennec collided during a mid-air manoeuvre during a flypast training for the RMN's 90th-anniversary celebrations.

Following the collision, the AW139 HOM helicopter crashed at the steps of the Navy Stadium while the Fennec crashed near the Navy Sports Complex pool.

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