Me­mo­rial planned for lost MH370 pas­sen­gers

Central Telegraph - - NEWS -

FAM­I­LIES be­reaved by the dis­ap­pear­ance of MH370 have wel­comed the de­ci­sion to build a per­ma­nent me­mo­rial in Perth as a last­ing trib­ute to the flight’s 239 pas­sen­gers and crew.

Rel­a­tives and friends of the Aus­tralians on board the Malaysia Air­lines flight, in­clud­ing Rod and Mary Bur­rows, gath­ered at St John’s Cathe­dral in Bris­bane to mark the third an­niver­sary of the tragedy.

Fed­eral Trans­port Min­is­ter Dar­ren Ch­ester, Aus­tralian Trans­port Safety Bureau Chief Com­mis­sioner Greg Hood and for­mer deputy prime min­is­ter War­ren Truss joined the fam­i­lies for the ser­vice.

Mr Ch­ester de­liv­ered the news a me­mo­rial would be es­tab­lished in Perth to hon­our ev­ery­one on board the Boe­ing 777.

He ac­knowl­edged the “sad­ness, frus­tra­tion and dis­ap­point­ment” shared by fam­i­lies that the plane’s fate re­mained un­known.

“It’s a hol­low feel­ing for the fam­i­lies today but it’s im­por­tant we gather and pay our re­spects. We’re still hope­ful there may be a break­through in weeks or months to come that leads us to the lo­ca­tion of MH370.”

Mr Ch­ester said work con­tin­ued at the ATSB in terms of as­sess­ing satel­lite im­agery, re­view­ing sonar work in the South­ern Indian Ocean and drift mod­el­ling as more de­bris was found.

“There’s been pieces of de­bris lo­cated over the past cou­ple of years – some far more sig­nif­i­cant than oth­ers – and they’ve given in­ves­ti­ga­tors more in­for­ma­tion, but in terms of cred­i­ble new ev­i­dence lead­ing to a lo­ca­tion of MH370, we don’t have that yet,” he said.

Karla McMaster, whose par­ents Rod and Mary Bur­rows were trav­el­ling on MH370, said it was “hard not hav­ing an­swers”.

“We’re hope­ful the search is con­tin­ued at a later date and that we can get an­swers and find out where our par­ents are and all the other pas­sen­gers, and make sure that ev­ery­one who’s go­ing to be flying is safe again,” said Ms McMaster.

“All the of­fi­cials that we speak to are so in­vested in this and I re­ally feel that they want to find it as well.”

Mr Truss, who over­saw the start of the com­plex un­der­wa­ter search, de­nied they rushed into the op­er­a­tion.

He said the de­bris dis­cov­er­ies pro­vided less spe­cific in­for­ma­tion than the Inmarsat satel­lite data on which the 120,000sq km“high prob­a­bil­ity” zone was based.

“We had the best experts in their fields work­ing on the search, and it is deeply dis­ap­point­ing to ev­ery­one the air­craft hasn’t been found,” said Mr Truss.

PHOTO: ROK240314BURROWS

Rod­ney and Mary Bur­rows were aboard the ill-fated flight MH370.

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