At an age where many kids are clueless about their surroundings, Aitazaz Hassan Bangash and his cousin, Musadiq Ali Bangash, were aware enough about their surroundings that they noticed a suspicious person who didn’t fit in while they were on their way to school.
Ninth-grader Aitazaz Hassan Bangash was on his way to the Ibrahimzai School on Monday in the Hangu district of northern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province when the bomber, dressed in a school uniform, asked him where the school was, the teen’s cousin told CNN.
Aitazaz and his cousin, Musadiq Ali Bangash, became suspicious, Musadiq said.
“The other students backed off, but Aitazaz challenged the bomber and tried to catch him. During the scuffle, the bomber panicked and detonated his bomb,” he said.
Rajab Ali, who also witnessed the bombing, told CNN that he saw Aitazaz throw a large stone at a boy trying to enter the school. The blast happened when Aitazaz grabbed him, he said.
Aitazaz and the bomber died at the scene. Witnesses say the blast injured two other people.
I don’t know of many grown ups who would purposefully sacrifice themselves to save others around them. I’m not saying that none exist, but I don’t think there would be many who would be willing to risk getting blown up just to save those around them.
It takes courage to face an attacker like that. If things go well, you could prevent an attack without anybody getting hurt. In this instance, Bangash died a hero if I were to write his life’s story. There is no other way to state it. By sacrificing himself, he saved the lives of his fellow students so that they can live on.
In a world where people are often prejudged by the actions of the few, I am hoping this is a sign of the future of the world. When the young are not taught to hate each other for indiscriminate reasons, we can all work together towards common causes. I don’t call very many people hero because I think overuse can make it almost meaningless after a while. For Aitazaz Bangash, hero is the only word I can think of that would describe his actions. May he rest in peace and his memory live on fondly with his family and friends.