Our friends and Jens´s ring us often to find out how we´re doing and when the funeral will be. We can´t answer.
The knowledge that Jens is dead – that he´s been murdered – and the uncertainty about when his remains will finally be returned, as well as the fact that Germanwings keeps putting us off, combined with our deep anguish and health issues like rapid heartbeat, stomach cramps and high blood pressure are almost too much for us to bear. The sorrowful pictures from North Rhine Westphalia — the convoy of white hearses carrying the Haltern high school students´ caskets and those of their teachers — make the distressing situation worse.
We only want our child back, even if there are just parts of his body. He needs to come home so we can bury him. Is that too much to ask???
Melanie flies to Paris today to attend the French prosecutor´s informational meeting. After that she´d like to accompany Jens´s remains from Marseille to Leipzig.
We stay home as we want to organise the funeral as quickly as possible should we finally get an arrival date. Maybe we could even have the funeral in June? But time is slipping away so quickly.
Melanie writes that she arrived in France with no problems. Germanwings representatives assigned to the family members at the hotel talk a lot but don´t really say much of anything.
I ring Germanwings´ Care Center several times. First I make sure that even if Jens´s girlfriend is informed about progress in Paris, we as his parents also want to be kept up to date on the status of the tranfer. One never knows. I´ve become wary.
The employee realises before I ask my deliberate question. “When will our child arrive in Leipzig?“
“Hmm, um, just a second.“ She checks, I wait. I hear noise at the other end of the line.
“Yes.“ My reply is clipped and I sound aggressive.
I hear the usual answers. “We were told that maybe, perhaps, possibly his remains could be transferred on Saturday or Sunday, but we don´t know exactly. Hmm, so there´s a chance that his remains could maybe, possibly be transferred, um, Saturday or Sunday. Or later? But it´s not clear yet. As soon as we know anything we´ll ring you.“
I end the call before I get stroppy.
I´ve recently started to get the feeling that we in Saxony are being treated like second class citizens. No one from Germanwings has come here to speak to us about the details of the transfer like they did in Haltern with the parents of the murdered high school students. Guess we´re not as effective for the media!
The remains of the crash victims should be returned with dignity.
How long will we still have to wait?
© Brigitte Voß / Translation: Ellen Rosenbaum