Naeem Rashid, 50

I am nearly the same age as you, and I haven't even started to do all the things I want to do in this world. Were you the same? You lived teaching kiwi kids, you died helping others. 


I saw this post on Facebook before I wrote 2. And you won’t be shocked to read I bloody did it – I made a snap judgment the moment I saw the picture – I deemed it patronising and unnecessary and said to myself that doesn’t actually happen. And out of despicability (this is so not a word but what is the word?) but suffice it to say with a quite different intention than in Act 2, I clicked on the associated link.

And then, I was horrified to discover what had prompted this flurry of posts.


Seriously you drunken arse, we get that you have been suckerpunched by a treasonous traitor – but so bloody have we all!

Ladies, I get that you hide your faces. But who asked you to show us your backs? In muted darkness no less. Is this cultural or some policy for interviewing? Either way, it is not the way we ignorant white folk in the wider world expect to see heroes interviewed. You stood up to abuse without retaliating. Way more than I would have managed, camera or none in the threat. Well done for keeping your heads. I get your desire not to be trolled and harassed, but light, face and voice blur and are filming techniques we are all used to. Shame on anyone who wants to perpetuate the mystery surrounding beautiful brave women.

Once more I am sorry for the behaviour of idiots in my country. But may I confess that if his behaviour came from a nasty manifestation of fear and not knowing what to do, he is not alone in that. I have absolutely no idea about the right thing to do to express my grief, sadness, anger and rage.

The world might say, and is even starting to I am sorry to report, wake up and smell the dying roses, and yes thank you I now truly am. But this is new to us. This is not kiwi. And we don’t know how to behave.

Ladies right now what could we do that would be doing right by you? I for one would love to know. And if you ever feel brave enough to tell me, then perhaps it will give you some peace, because then we can act appropriately.

Naeem, you have been honoured by your country of birth. The light of your honour will live on in heroes like these brave, gracious women.

I don't know how you came to leave your country of birth to come to NZ, it was marriage that brought me to the UK, so I see too little of my family back home. But for the good side of technology and social media I wouldn't know what they were up to at all.
Your family in Abbotsbad, Pakistan are part of our extended whanau.