Just over a week ago, 13-year-old Ryan Pourjam’s father, Mansour Pourjam, died in a plane crash after Iran’s military “unintentionally” shot down a Ukrainian jetliner, killing all 176 civilian passengers aboard.
Just over a week ago, 13-year-old Ryan Pourjam's father, Mansour Pourjam, died in a plane crash after Iran's military "unintentionally" shot down a Ukrainian jetliner, killing all 176 civilian passengers aboard.
In the wake of his father's death, Ryan delivered an emotional speech at the Wednesday vigil to commemorate Mansour Pourjam.
Ryan described his father as "strong" and said that Mansour would have wanted Ryan and his loved ones to remain optimistic during this period of grief.
"I can't remember a single moment in my life where Mansour, my dad, had any trace of negativity in his voice or actions," Ryan said.
"He'd always tell me to stay positive through the dark times and through the good."
The memorial service at Carlton University, in Ottawa, Canada, was held jointly for Fareed Arasteh who also died onboard the Ukrainian jetliner.
Mr Aratesh was a PhD student and Mr Pourjam graduated from the institution with a biology degree in 2001 according to CBC.
The room was filled with more than 200 family members and friends of Mr Pourjam and Mr Aratesh, who came together to "celebrate Mansour and Fareed's amazing lives".
As Ryan wiped tears from his eyes and his voice began to shake, attendees applauded him for his "unbelievable poise" in the face of extreme tragedy.
"I don't want to talk about the bad things because I know that if my dad was alive and if someone else died in the crash, he wouldn't talk about the bad stuff. I won't," Ryan said.
"I stand up here a week after this horrible tragedy and I still can't believe it. I feel like I'm dreaming.
"I know that if I was dreaming and that if he woke me up, he'd tell me that it's going to be okay, and it will be."
Source: 9News https://www.9news.com.au/world/iran-plane-crash-victim-son-delivers-emotional-speech-at-vigil/3e999118-6e60-45eb-846a-9203df6703b5