AT Monitoring Desk
KABUL: A hero grandpa who threw himself in front of a worshiper, a woman gunned down trying to save her quadriplegic husband and a 4-year-old boy are among those killed by a hate-filled extremist in the New Zealand mosque attacks, according to reports.
Daoud Nabi, 71, was an Afghan who shot dead after he jumped into the gunman’s line of fire to protect another worshper at the Masjid Al Noor Mosque in Christchurch, NBC News reported.
Omar Nabi, 43, was also supposed to be at the mosque on Friday morning, but skipped prayer because of work. He described his father (inset below) as a generous man who immigrated to New Zealand from Afghanistan with his children in the 1980s.
After hearing news of the shooting, Omar Nabi rushed to the mosque and called his father’s phone, but he did not pick up.
“I’m a bit lost,” Nabi, a mechanic, told NBC News after learning of his engineer father’s death. “He is a man of lots of knowledge, and I’ve been his student for a long time.
“He’s helped everyone who’s a refugee,” he said, describing how his father would go to the airport to greet refugees and help them start new lives.
“Whether you’re from Palestine, Iraq, Syria — he’s been the first person to hold his hand up,” Nabi said.
A Bangladeshi woman was also killed when she rushed to her quadriplegic husband’s side after gunfire broke out, The Bangla Tribune reported.
Husna Ara Parvin and Farid Uddin Amed married in 1994 and moved to New Zealand several years later. According to the couple’s nephew, Parvin wheeled her husband to the mosque for Friday prayers each week.
The mosque is separated into men’s and women’s sections. When the shooting broke out, Parvin reportedly raced to be with her husband, not realizing he had already been wheeled to safety by others in the mosque.
She was caught in the cross hairs and shot dead.
New Zealand police confirmed her death to the family.
A preacher at a Minneapolis mosque told the Washington Post that he got news from family in New Zealand that his 4-year-old nephew, Abdullahi, had been slain. His brother-in-law, who was wounded, was at the mosque with his five kids. The four older children were unharmed.
As of Friday evening, 49 people were confirmed dead. New Zealand authorities were still working to confirm the identity of victims.
Also included in the dead are several Syrian refugees, whose names have not been released, Newshub.co.nz reported.
“It is deeply saddening that these refugees have come all the way from Syria to New Zealand, thinking that it was a safe haven,” said Ali Akil, of refugee organization Syrian Solidarity New Zealand.
“They escaped death and torture in Syria, to come to New Zealand and be killed here.”
Meanwhile, hundreds of distressed family members spent Friday night at Christchurch Hospital, desperate for news on their missing loved ones.
Among the missing is a 3-year-old boy.
Speaking outside court Saturday morning, Omar Nabi said of the attack that killed his father: “It is a cowardly act.”