Deceased diver’s father: The pain is unbearable

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Kazim Ali and his wife Katherine offer incense during a memorial for their son Kazim Ali Jnr on Tuesday at the Our Lady of Perpetual Help RC Church in San Fernando. Ali Jr was among four divers who died in the Paria tragedy on February 25. PHOTO BY LINCOLN HOLDER –

In a second farewell ceremony for his son Kazim Ali Jr, one of the divers killed in an incident at Paria Fuel Trading Co Ltd’s Berth Six off Point-a-Pierre on February 25, Kazim Ali Snr said he was trying to understand his own purpose on earth.

Divers Fyzal Kurban, Yusuf Henry and Rishi Nagassar also died in the incident while a fifth diver, Christopher Boodram, was rescued. The divers were employed by diving contracting firm LMCS Ltd from Marabella, hired by Paria to conduct maintenance work on its pipeline at Berth Six.

Ali Snr is the owner of LMCS.

Kazim’s memorial service took place on Tuesday at Our Lady of Perpetual Help, Harris Promenade, San Fernando, officiated by Fr Martin Sirju.

In a brief discussion with Newsday after the service, Ali Snr said he spent most of his life trying to understand and serve what he thought was his purpose.

“This has happened, my son is lost. Over the years and most of my life I have wondered what my purpose was. It was, I thought, to do good for humanity, live simply and be kind.

“I’m now left to wonder what’s next. I pray for the families who lost loved ones in this tragedy. The pain is unbearable, I can only imagine.”

He said the other divers killed in the incident were also like family to him.

On February 25, all five men were doing underwater maintenance at Berth Six when they were sucked into a 30-inch pipeline. Boodram was rescued that same day.

The bodies of Kurban, Kazim and Henry were recovered on March 1 and Nagassar’s body was found early on March 4.

On Saturday, Kazim was buried according to Muslim rites and, on Monday, Kurban was cremated at the Shore of Peace (Mosquito Creek) in Christian rites.

Henry’s funeral is scheduled for Wednesday. A date for Nagassar’s funeral has not yet been determined.