In this episode of Zwaailicht (Beacon), show host Wilfred Kemp interviews Marieke Poelmann about the indescribable day when she heard her parents had both died in the Tripoli airplane crash. She wrote the book ‘Alles om jullie heen is er nog’ (Everything Around Them Is Still There) about her loss. The best friends of her parents, Johan en Marian Huitema, share their memories. Assalina Hamming, a volunteer at Slachtofferhulp (Victim Assistance, a non-profit organization in The Netherlands) talks about how she assisted Marieke and her two brothers. How do you cope with such an immense loss? Finally, family and friends all come together in the Dominicanen kerk (church) in Zwolle to memorize Peter and Adri Poelmann.
On May 12 2010 the parents of Marieke Poelmann (writer and freelance journalist, 1988) died in the Tripoli airplane crash. They were on their way home from a vacation in South Africa.
On May 12th both of Marieke Poelmann’s parents are killed in the airplane crash near Tripoli. They were on their way home after a vacation in South Africa. Marieke is 22 at the time. She recently started a career in journalism and suddenly finds herself on the wrong side of the news. What happens next is overwhelming: family detectives, victim assistance, banks and insurance companies all line up at her parents’ doorstep. Suddenly, she also shares the responsibility with her older brother Boris for their handicapped brother Sandor, who had a brain tumor when he was 11 years old. Not to mention the immense loss and grief that presents itself, which Poelmann describes incisively in her book Alles om jullie heen is er nog.
“Because of the accident, I lost my faith in life. That is slowly coming back to me, yes. Around the time I turned 25 I noticed that I started feeling stronger again, I made my own choices and stopped seeing life as a burden. Now, I try to focus on what I want from life. My boyfriend helped me a lot changing my perspective. He encouraged me to stop only looking back, but to look ahead as well. He taught me to live in the now, and how to make myself comfortable right where I am.
‘In the months after July 17th 2014, I discovered that being a victim of a national disaster is something that stays with you forever. Maybe it’s like a covenant you sign involuntarily, without the possibility to withdraw or resign. People who say that life goes on mean it well, but with a loss of this magnitude, parts of your life actually stop. They are never coming back. That does not get better. It will never be over and it will never be alright. The only thing that happens, is that it it becomes bearable. Time has its way with it, whether you want it to or not. For years I refused to accept that. I resisted, the grief wasn’t supposed to get better. My fathers hands around my cold feet, my mothers voice at my bedside. If the grief would wear off, I would lose them again. It took me quite some time to realize it doesn’t work that way. I discovered that there is one part of them I could never lose; the part that is in me.’
In mijn nachtmerries zie ik ze weer in dat vliegtuig zitten
Door: ANNEMARIE VAN LOOIJ
De ouders van Marieke Poelmann (27) vertrokken vijf jaar geleden op een droomreis naar Zuid-Afrika. Op de terugweg crashte hun vliegtuig bij Tripoli. Marieke schreef er het boek ‘Alles om jullie heen is er nog’ over.
“Vorig jaar. Ik ben op fietsvakantie met mijn vriend. We fietsen van Amsterdam naar Berlijn en als we bij een camping aankomen, zet ik mijn telefoon aan. Gemiste oproepen. WhatsApp-jes. ‘Ik denk aan je meis!’ ‘Wat zal dit een moeilijk moment voor je zijn.’ Ik heb geen idee wat er aan de hand is en krijg een onbestemd gevoel. Het is 17 juli 2014. In Oekraïne is een vliegtuig neergestort. Een vliegtuig vol Nederlanders. Het is alsof ik vijf jaar terug in de tijd geslingerd word. Als ik het nieuws teruglees op mijn telefoon, zeg ik tegen mijn vriend dat ik het gevoel heb dat ik iemand aan boord ken. Hoe groot is de kans?”
In VIVA 28, 8 t/m 14 juli
This month marks the one year anniversary of the shooting of flight MH17 in Ukraine. On July 17th 2014, 298 people were killed. Among them were 196 Dutch people.
This week at Radio EenVandaag we are reviewing the fatal flight: families of the victims are slowly recovering from their immense loss but are still regularly confronted with news coverage about MH17.
On July 17th there is a memorial service for the families of the victims in Nieuwegein, one of the speakers at the memorial is the 27-year old Marieke Poelmann. She lost both of her parents in the Tripoli airplane crash in 2010 and wrote a book about her loss: ‘Alles om jullie heen is er nog.’ In Radio EenVandaag we are talking to Poelmann about her experiences.
Ruim vijf jaar geleden verliest Marieke Poelmann (27) haar beide ouders bij de vliegramp in Tripoli. De eerste weken is het verdriet te groot om erbij te kunnen. Toch zit ze vijf dagen na de begrafenis zelf weer in het vliegtuig. ‘Je bent altijd sterker dan je denkt.’
Interview: Nienke Pleysier
Fotografie: Brenda van Leeuwen
Visagie: Ronald Huisinga
In het julinummer van JAN Magazine
I’m a fighter, just like my mom
Short interview series about how young people deal with loss and grief. Today: Linda de Best. She lost her father when she was still a toddler and her mother a year ago. „Focus on what you have, not on what you’ve lost.”
By: MARIEKE POELMANN
Linda de Best (25) was only four years old when her father ended his life by jumping in front of a train. Linda herself was suffering from leukemia at the time. She was left behind, together with her mother, and was cured. She grew up as a happy child and was very close to her mother. Until her mother got hit by a car last year. She ended up in a coma and died. Linda talks about how the loss of her parents dictates her life, then and now.
„In kindergarten I raised my finger and said: ‘my father is dead’. I got kicked out of class, the other children weren’t supposed to hear it. I found out about this in my mom’s old notes, I can’t remember it myself. I never knew my mother kept a diary at the time, I found the notebooks after she died. I could read that she was desperate at times, I never knew about that either. I wish I could talk to her about it.”
Vijf jaar geleden kwamen de ouders van Marieke Poelmann om het leven bij de vliegtuigramp in Tripoli. Haar leven veranderde voorgoed. Over dat immense verlies en over de invloed van zo’n ingrijpende gebeurtenis, schreef ze het boek ‘Alles om jullie heen is er nog’.
In de ochtend van 12 mei 2015 verongelukte het vliegtuig van Afriqiyah Airways in Tripoli. Van de 104 inzittenden overleefde een jongen de ramp, de overige 103 niet. Onder hen 70 Nederlanders.
Presentatie: Marcia Welman.
Maybe I had the wrong day
Five years ago today, an airplane crashed in Tripoli, Libya. Marieke Poelmann lost both of her parents and wrote a book about it. For nrc.next she interviews others who suffered the same fate. This week: Maryam Massarrat, who heard during her vacation that her father was on board of the crashed plane.
By: MARIEKE POELMANN
Today, it’s May 12th. Exactly five years after the Tripoli airplane crash where 103 people died. Among them there were seventy Dutch passengers, who were returning from their vacation in South Africa. One of them was the father of Maryam Massarrat (35). We met in Amsterdam to talk about the first moments after hearing about the crash.
One of the first things people always ask me, is how I heard about the accident five years ago. What happened on that day for you?
“On May 12th 2010 I was on vacation with my sister in Iran, we were visiting my grandmother. I was supposed to stay at my uncle’s place that night and arrived at 11 pm. I never got past their garden. My family was waiting for me outside. ‘Why aren’t we going in?’, I asked them. They stopped me. I remember thinking: this isn’t a really warm welcome. ‘We have to tell you something’, my uncle said. ‘Something bad happened.’ I asked him if it was my mother, or my sister. ‘Is it dad?’, I finally asked. ‘Did his plane crash?’.
I knew my father was supposed to come home that day from his vacation in South Africa. When my uncle said yes I got dizzy. I felt this silence in my head, everything went past me. I clung onto the first thing I saw, a parked car covered in dust. I had to hold on to something. We returned to my grandmother and sister immediately. My family had booked us a flight home to The Netherlands that same night. They told me the news at the latest possible moment, just in time to catch the plane.”
Ze zijn er echt niet meer
Journaliste Marieke Poelmann (27) verloor in één klap beide ouders bij de vliegramp in Tripoli. Ze schreef er een ontroerend en wijs boek over: Alles om jullie heen is er nog.
Interview: Maartje Laterveer
Te lezen in het juni 2015 nummer van Vogue
‘Everything around them is still there’. That’s the titel of the book Marieke Poelmann wrote about the loss of her parents, five years ago in Tripoli. Marieke remembers it like it was yesterday, on May 12th in 2010 Afriqiyah Airways flight 8U771 crashed. The plane took off from Johannesburg, South Africa and was supposed to continue to London after a layover in Libya. During landing procedure, the restart went wrong. There was a lack of cooperation and communication in the cockpit.
SBS ‘Hart van Nederland’ interviewed Marieke about her book.
Waarom hebben jullie me hier achter gelaten?
Marieke Poelmann verloor haar ouders bij de vliegramp in Tripoli. Dat is deze week vijf jaar geleden. Ze schreef er een boek over. „Zo krijg ik de controle over mijn leven terug.”
Door: Merlijn Kerkhof
Ze waren nog nooit buiten Europa op vakantie geweest. De ouders van Marieke Poelmann (27) kwamen meestal niet verder dan Duitsland. Eindelijk had het echtpaar uit Zwolle besloten naar Zuid-Afrika te gaan. Het kón ook eindelijk – met de drie kinderen ging het goed, ook met de middelste zoon om wie ze zoveel zorgen hadden gehad. Hij liep hersenschade op nadat hij op zijn elfde was geopereerd aan een hersentumor.
Opeens was Marieke niemands kind meer
Het is dinsdag precies vijf jaar geleden dat Marieke Poelmann een telefoontje kreeg dat haar leven voorgoed veranderde.
Door: Yang Yang Chiu
Voor Marieke Poelmann is het leven verdeeld in voor en na 12 mei 2010. Die dag verongelukte vlucht 8U 71 bij Tripoli. De negenjarige Ruben overleefde als enige de crash. Marieke verloor bij dat ongeluk haar ouders, die op de terugweg waren van een drieweekse vakantie in Zuid-Afrika.