The month of June had more than its fair share of deaths—from notables to the unknown. While the world laments the loss of a pop icon, we should remember that hundreds of others are feeling the pain of loss over those killed in the Air France flight from Brazil and more recently, the flight from Yemen that crashed into the Indian Ocean. Despite the tragedy of the lives lost, we should probably celebrate the survival of Baya Bakari, the 14-year-old plucked from the waves by search and rescue crews.
How or why Baya survived when so many others perished is something that will have people speculating over for days and weeks to come. Where was she sitting in the plane? Did others survive and help her to make it through only to lose their own lives? What can she tell investigators about events leading to the crash? And perhaps the most persistent question: Who is this young lady and what does she mean to the world that she should survive?
One hundred and fifty-two others didn’t make it—but Baya Bakari did! Ten hours in the water, clinging to debris, unable to swim and without a life jacket—and in shark-infested water.
Baya’s mother is presumed to have perished. Her father, Kassim Basari, was not on the flight and is said to be ecstatic that his daughter survived.
NOTE: According to some reports, she is either 12, 13, or 14 and the spelling of her first name varies.