18 Canadians were among the 157 people killed onboard an Ethiopian Airlines that crashed earlier this week on Sunday. In the days that follow the crash, the identities of the Canadian victims have started to be released. Now, it has been revealed that a 9-month-old Canadian baby girl was killed in the Ethiopian plane crash.
The baby girl is reportedly the youngest Canadian victim from the tragic accident. Her name was Rubi Paul. She was the only member of her family who had Canadian citizenship. The baby girl was travelling from Ontario to Kenya.
Her grandfather told CP24 that the plane crash in Ethiopia took place while she was en route to visit Kenya with her family – her mother, grandmother and older siblings. The trip was supposed to be the baby's first time meeting her grandfather.
"It's just hard to accept that this has happened," Quindos Karanja told CP24 on the phone. "I feel so much loss. And pain. I'm lonely."
The grandfather said he's having a difficult time with the loss of several family members. Not only was his granddaughter's life claimed in the accident, but also his wife Ann Wangui Karanja, his daughter Carolyne Karanja, and his other grandchildren as well, seven-year-old Ryan and four-year-old Kerri.
Carolyne Karanja, the mother of Rubi Paul, was from Kenya. She was not a Canadian resident but had already applied to permanently stay in Canada, Quindos Karanja said. His wife, who was also killed in the accident, had been staying in Canada for several months for a visit.
Quindos Karanja said his daughter was already anxious before the trip. "She didn't know why she had that bad feeling ... that was my final talk with her," he said.
This is the second family with Canadian members that have lost several members and generations in the fatal accident. Six members of a family from Brampton were also killed in the crash – two teenagers, their parents and grandparents.
The tragic accident has also claimed the lives of several other Canadians. A number of the Canadians killed in the crash were humanitarian workers. Some were on the flight because they were travelling to a United Nations Environment Assembly in Kenya. A Carleton professor, a mother and daughter pair from Alberta, and more were also among the Canadian victims.