The Australian faces of MH17

They are your neighbours, your friends and your children.

It was a solemn reminder from Prime Minister Tony Abbott of the national impact of the death of at least 36 Australian citizens and residents on board downed flight MH17.

As their bodies lay on the fields of eastern Ukraine, the nation began mourning them.

• Black box found, bodies removed from crash site. Crash site difficulties explained
• IN PICTURES: The aftermath of the MH17 tragedy
• Shameless selfies and theft at crash site
Friends remember Lithgow woman killed in crash
Swinburne uni student among MH17 dead

A national day of mourning is still weeks away, but Australian leaders including the Governor-General Peter Cosgrove, Mr Abbott, and Opposition Leader Bill Shorten attended a remembrance mass in Sydney in Sunday.

“The downing of MH17 was not an innocent accident, it was the outcome of a trail of human evil,” Sydney Bishop Peter Comensoli told the packed St Mary’s Catholic Cathedral.

Australian victims: The faces of the MH17 disaster



IT security consultant, 48, and Dutch national from Melbourne. His wife, family and friends are devastated by his loss.

DAVISON, Francesca “Frankie”


The Toorak College (Mt Eliza) teacher and her husband were on board the flight. Ms Davison, 54, had taught at the school for 28 years and also worked with disadvantaged communities in Sri Lanka. Liam, 57, was an award-winning novelist, teacher and keen cyclist. They leave behind two children, Milly and Sam.


TEOH, Elaine

The couple, both 27, were on their way to a wedding in Malaysia. Ms Teoh, originally from Penang in Malaysia, and Mr Mahler, a Dutch national, lived in Melbourne where they worked in the finance sector. (It’s understood that Ms Teoh, as a Malaysian national, wouldn’t be included in the Australian death toll.)

MENKE, Gerry


Gerry Menke and his wife Mary owned an abalone pearl company in Mallacoota and have been described as a “beautiful couple”. The business recently won a prize at the East Gippsland Business Awards.

RIZK, Albert

RIZK, Maree

The husband and wife from Sunbury, north of Melbourne, have two children, James and Vanessa. Albert and Maree were returning to Australia, after a month-long holiday in Europe, and reportedly had been trying to change their flight to avoid a long stopover in Kuala Lumpur. Mr Rizk was a director of the local Raine & Horne real estate branch.


A scene from a memorial to the Van Den Hende family.





DEWA, Shaliza

Hans van den Hende, his wife, Shaliza Dewa, and their three children Piers, Marnix and Margaux lived at Eynesbury, west of Melbourne. Piers, 13, played soccer at Melton Phoenix, and club president Steve Fuller found out about the family’s death early on Saturday morning.

*One more Australian to be identified.


Seven victims.

BAKER, Wayne

BAKER, Theresa

The couple were aged 55 and 53, respectively. They have two sons, aged in their 20s. The Bakers were based in Buddina on the Sunshine Coast but also lived in Darwin. They recently retired and had been travelling around Europe for six weeks.


Roger Guard.

GUARD, Roger


Toowoomba couple and doctors Roger and Jill Guard, were returning to Australia after holidaying following a medical conference. Roger Guard was director of pathology at Toowoomba Hospital, while Jill Guard worked as a GP. Both were well-regarded in the Toowoomba and Queensland health communities.


The Gold Coast woman, aged in her late 50s, was reportedly travelling home from a friend’s wedding in Europe, according to the Gold Coast Bulletin. She had moved to Burleigh from Melbourne four years ago. It’s been reported she was originally from Adelaide.

HORDER, Howard


The Brisbane couple, both 63, had been travelling in Europe. They have three sons – living in Melbourne, the Sunshine Coast and London – who are on their way to Brisbane in the wake of their parents’ deaths.

Western Australia

Seven, plus one permanent


Nick Norris was the managing director of management consulting firm Collaborative Systemic Change Pty Ltd. Survived by daughter Kirstin, who is in the Navy and living in Sydney, son Brack, daughter Rin Maslin, another child and wife Lindy, a Murdoch University professor.


Mo, Otis and Evie Maslin.

MASLIN, Mo (12)

MASLIN, Evie (10)

MASLIN, Otis (8)

Grandchildren of Nick Norris. Parents Rin Maslin and her husband Anthony Maslin had stayed behind in Amsterdam while Mr Norris brought the children home in time for the new school term.


The Irishwoman, 50, was returning to Perth for start of school term at Good Shepherd Catholic Primary School, Kelmscott where she worked as an administrator. Her husband and children were not on the flight, according to the Irish Independent newspaper.


Arjen Ryder.

RYDER, Arjen

RYDER, Yvonne

Albany local and Department of Agriculture and Food employee Arjen was travelling with his wife Yvonne. Her sister Anne Trudgeon told Perth Now she’s lost a “beautiful” sister and brother in-law.


Three nationals, plus one unknown

CLANCY, Michael


Retired Wollongong couple Michael and Carol Clancy, believed to be aged 64 and 57, are understood to have been on the flight following a three-week European holiday. A neighbour and close friend of the Kanahooka couple, Gail Leila Rhind, said Mrs Clancy’s former husband told her the couple had been killed.


Jack O’Brien, 25, was on his way home to Sydney after a seven-week European holiday. Family members said they were devastated his life had been cut short so suddenly. “He was loved so much,” the family said in a statement. (It is not yet clear if Mr O’Brien is an Australian citizen or permanent resident)


Philomene Tiernan.

TIERNAN, Philomene

Sister Philomene Tiernan, 77, a nun who taught at Kincoppal at Rose Bay, was among those killed. Among those paying tribute was Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull. “Many women incl (sic) my wife Lucy & daughter Daisy were inspired by the love of Sr Phil Tiernan RSCJ,” he tweeted.


One victim

DERDEN, Liliane

Mother of two Liliane Derden, 50, from Hall in Canberra’s north. Ms Derden worked for the National Health and Medical Research Council, whose staff expressed deep sadness at the loss of a valued colleague and friend.


One victim.

BELL, Emma

A young Homelands teacher aged in her 20s, joined the staff at Maningrida College early last year. She was spending the school holidays in Europe before returning to the Northern Territory for the new term beginning next week.


* DFAT’s official Australian toll remains at 28 known citizens. The number would rise to 37 if permanent residents are included)

** Sources: Government advice, media reports, family members.

*** Some of the victims may not be Australian passport holders or may have not yet be verified.

Stay informed, daily
A FREE subscription to The New Daily arrives every morning and evening.
The New Daily is a trusted source of national news and information and is provided free for all Australians. Read our editorial charter
Copyright © 2024 The New Daily.
All rights reserved.