A year after flight MH370 disappeared without trace, Malaysia Airlines held a private gathering to remember the 239 passengers and crew who remain unaccounted for.
The event was held at the Malaysia Airlines Academy in Kuala Lumpur on Sunday, and was attended by airline employees and family members of the 13 crew members lost in the mysterious incident.
The gathering was led by MAS chairman, Md Nor Yusof, and CEO, Ahmad Jauhari Yahya.
“Today we acknowledge the reality of our shared loss and remember 13 dear friends and colleagues who left us when MH370 disappeared one year ago,” said Yusof. “We love them. We miss them and we will never forget them. They will always remain in our hearts.”
Yahya also paid tribute to the airline’s employees for their support to the airline over the course of a tragic year, which also included the loss of flight MH17 over Ukraine.
“Whilst MH370 was tragic for all of us, it also brought out the best in Malaysia Airlines,” the CEO said. “Watching how the whole organisation came together, united, supported each other as a family in crisis, really amazed me. I am deeply honoured and touched by the spirit of volunteerism by everyone who came forward offering to help in any way you could.”
Yusof also admitted that, despite a year-long search operation, the world is “no closer to finding” the aircraft.
But Malaysia’s Prime Minister Najib Razak said he was “hopeful” the Boeing 777 would still be found, and the country’s Transport Minister, Liow Tiong Lai, said this could occur “by May this year”. This the expected completion date of the Indian Ocean search.
So far, the multinational search team has scoured more than 26,000km² of seafloor in the remote part of the Indian Ocean where flight MH370 is believed to have crashed. This is approximately 40% of the “priority search area”. But as time goes on, and with no trace of the aircraft, its passengers or cargo having been found in the year since the disappearance, it seems less likely the mystery of flight MH370 will be solved.