Glenn Thomas, media officer with the World Health Organization, was one of the 298 people killed onboard MH17 on July 17 after it was shot down over Ukraine. Thomas was a UK citizen who was headed to an international Aids conference in Australia this weekend.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. He Was From Blackpool in England
Bangor University is saddened to learn that former student Glenn Thomas was one of the pasengers on board Malaysia Airlines MH17. Glenn graduated with a degree in Economics from Bangor University in 1987, and the thoughts of all at Bangor University are with his family and friends at this tragic time.
2. Thomas Posted ‘Long Day’s Journey Into Night’ on Facebook Prior to Boarding
— WHO (@WHO) July 18, 2014
In his role with the World Health Organization, Thomas was based in Geneva, Switzerland. Just hours before he perished onboard MH17, he had posted on Facebook “long day’s journey into night” before boarding an Air France flight from Geneva to Amsterdam.
3. His Twin Posted a Heartbreaking Tribute to Thomas on Facebook
He is survived by his twin sister who waited patiently for information regarding his death before receiving confirmation that Thomas was on the flight late on July 17. His sister, Tracey Withers wrote: “Not slept all nite..crying in limbo here..wat happens nxt.” Then shortly after: “Twins forever my dear younget bro seeing I was born before you 2 mins xx love you x.”
His nephew, Jordan Withers, told the Daily Mail:
It’s hard to describe because he just treated me like a son and he was my best friend. If I had a problem, he’d always help me out in terms of work.
4. His Former Colleagues at the BBC Have Paid Tribute
Prior to working at the WHO, Thomas was a journalist at the BBC. News editor with the broadcaster, Rachel Kennedy, wrote on Twitter: “Horrified to discover lovely Glenn Thomas on MH17. Always a smiling face, will be hugely missed.”
5. 9 Britons Died in the Attack
Thomas is believed to be one of nine Britons who were on board the doomed flight.
— USA TODAY (@USATODAY) July 18, 2014