Grenfell Tower: Six-year-old Yaqub Hashim becomes fifth confirmed victim from same family

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

A boy of just six years old as been identified as one of the victims of the Grenfell Tower disaster - the fifth member of the same family to be confirmed dead.

The authorities have confirmed that Yaqub Hashim died in the blaze which ripped through the tower block three months ago.

Yaqub's 13-year-old brother Yahya and 12-year-old sister Firdaws have already been confirmed dead, along with parents Hashim Kedir and Nura Jamal. 

The family lived on the 22nd floor of the tower block, which caught fire on the night of June 15.

Police believe at least 80 people died in the blaze, and more than 50 people have been formally identified by the coroner, although not all names have yet been released. 

A police inquiry was set up in the immediate aftermath of the tragedy, and a separate inquiry, led by Sir Martin Moore-Bick, opened last week.

Yaqub's family have released two moving letters, which can be read in full here.


Dear Yaqub:

Our energetic, sporty, funny, smart and cute boy

You were the first one that came to my mind when I heard about the fire. Remembering your energy and your instant reaction to everything, I was worried that you may fall and break something while trying to go down all the stairs from the 22nd floor. I was worried for your parents how they were going to be able to hold you all the stairs from the 22nd floor. That you will be taken from us like this and so soon; it has never crossed my mind….

The energy you had, oh my! A minute at your presence wouldn’t pass without laughing; just following your movement was enough. You were in a rush all the time. Thinking about it now; it feels like you were trying to use all the energy you had and you didn’t want to waste a second of your unfairly short lifetime.

We went to visit your school: funny, hilarious, honey with a big smile, a great boy and a kind friend were some of the words that your friends used to describe you. We all could feel how much they miss you from the touching hugs we received from them. One of the girls even remembered the names of your nieces; she said that you used to talk a lot about them. The whole family misses you terribly our sweet and lively boy Yaqub.


Dear Yaqub,

I remember how exciting it was for everyone when you came into the world. Your older siblings Firdaws and Yahya would both have a little brother – me and my sister too. It makes me smile when I think about how much energy you had, even from the very beginning. Even before you could walk, you would crawl around on the floor so fast that we could barely keep up. And as you grew older, the crawling turned into walking, running and constant jumping and dancing. You had so much energy, and so much excitement. I remember how eager you were to play in the snow when you visited us in Norway last winter. The freezing cold weather didn’t stop you. I miss those days of playing in the snow, dancing to your favourite music and laughing at your jokes. When the fun came to an end, we said our goodbyes and you, your sister, your brother and your parents went back to London. My sister and I were always so disappointed when you had to leave – but we knew that we would meet again next year, so it was alright. This year we even made plans to go on vacation together in Italy or Turkey. It was meant to be a surprise, so our parents hadn’t told us…….

I’m still so shocked that something this horrible could happen to someone so precious and someone so innocent. I think of you and the memories we shared together every single day. And I’m so incredibly grateful that out of the unfairly little time you had in this world, I got to spend some of it with you. Thank you for filling my life and so many others with joy and laughter.

I will always love you Yaqub.

I hope and pray you were asleep and having a sweet dream in that horrible night and you haven’t seen a second of those terrorizing moments. I hope and pray you left us happy and joyous as you always have been.

Move On?
to “move on”
is to put something behind you
forget about it
… and never look back

Go on….
to “go on”
is to forever
carry it forward with you
and never forget

Yaqubye, my dear:
we promise never to move on
But we will try to go on…