The bodies of the three Maslin children, who died when flight MH17 was shot down in July, arrived back on Australian soil this week.
Mo, 12, Evie, 10, and Otis, 8, perished on Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 with their grandfather, Nick Norris, when the passenger plane was shot down over Ukraine on 17 July 2014.
The Perth children’s bodies arrived in Melbourne from the Netherlands on Thursday afternoon and have now be returned to their parents.
Today the Department of Foreign Affairs released a statement on behalf of their parents, Anthony Maslin and Marite “Rin” Norris. It reads:
“We have brought home the bodies of our children, Mo, Evie and Otis Maslin (aged 12, 10 and 8) from the Netherlands, along with their grandfather, Nick Norris. For the last three months, they have been lying in a cold room on the other side of the world. Reconciling this fact with the knowledge that our children are here with us, spiritually, every moment is one of the most relentless and agonizing difficulties of our current life.
Our love and respect for our children remains unlimited and unconditional. It will never weaken – our children have been our entire world.
We have been two of the luckiest and happiest people on the planet. What remains for us now is to honour our children.
We honour Mo – his wisdom, his compassionate heart, and his total selflessness. Mo is peaceful and inclusive. Mo can accept people of all ages and backgrounds, make them feel special, and have them know they are with someone extraordinary.
We honour Evie and her boundless, unlimited love. She is empathetic, beautiful, funny, artistic and creative. Her gentle spirit, warmth and absolute kindness are recognized by all who know her.
We honour Otis and his complete and humbling fascination with all things outdoors, big and small, near and far. Oti provides all of us with carefree joy and laughter – perhaps the most powerful gift of all.
Our children were taken from us by a war in which we, and our country had no part. It is impossible to understand the reason they were blown out of the sky.
Our lives are an ongoing hell. The pain we are enduring is unfathomable, and we grieve alongside families in the Ukraine, the Netherlands, Russia, Malaysia, Australia and elsewhere.
Please respect our children’s memory, and stop this pointless war.
No hate in the world is as strong as the love we have for our children, for Mo, for Evie, for Otis.
No hate in the world is as strong as the love we have for Grandad Nick.
No hate in the world is as strong as the love we have for each other.
Thanks to DFAT and their international support team. Thanks also to our friends and our family for their support and love. Love, only love, it is all we have left.”
– Anthony Maslin and Marite Norris
Rest in peace little angels.