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Grief and the Air France Crash

I still miss those I loved who are no longer with me but I find I am grateful for having loved them. The gratitude has finally conquered the loss. — Rita Mae Brown

My husband’s chartered flight kept circling around last friday for an hour. Visibility was zero at 4:00 PM. Lightning struck at that very moment amidst the dark gloomy weather surrounding the plane. His co-passengers freaked out and remembered the Air France crash. Fierce thunderstorms, lightning or a catastrophic combination are possible theories of the crash.

My husband is safe in my arms and I can’t help feeling grateful for his safety.

Yet I can’t help feeling sad for the Air France victims and their families.

Air France through a grief counselor told families of passengers on Flight 447 that the jetliner broke apart and they must abandon hope that anyone survived. Tearful relatives received counseling from a team of psychologists and doctors from Air France. It’s great that Air France provided grief counseling. Death due to a sudden or traumatic accident or disaster can raise a number of complex issues for the survivors. The grief process is often very different from an expected or anticipated death. An unexceptionally tragic event like the Air France crash can cause reactions such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder on the part of the family members and many of these problems compound the grief response.

Miguela Jugueta, a seaman’s wife here in the Philippines is grieving and in denial which is a normal reaction to such a sudden death. ‘I won’t believe he’s dead until I have his body.’ Bong (Jugueta) is a good swimmer. He might have survived,”

She continues to add “I cannot do anything if this is the will of God, but I continue to hope he is still alive.”

I wonder if Air France provided Miguela and her family the resources for grief counseling as well.

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