Sunday 1 February 2015

The Tsuruma Memorial Ceremony

Always remembered, memorial art by Haria Haritimado

About a week ago, the I-RED colony on Tsuruma VIII was struck by disaster when its reactor went critical due to sabotage. Thanks to the rapid assistance response of capsuleers, the majority of the colonists were evacuated into safety. However, despite their best efforts, thousands still perished when the colony was leveled by the explosion...
In this light, I-RED official Korsavius organized a memorial service to honour those who lost their lives in the  disaster. As Ishukone-Raata is a major supporter of the Ishukone Megacorporation, it was decided to hold the memorial service in their corporate headquarter in Malkalen.

As the memorial service would be open to the public & capsuleers alike, reservations were mandatory if you wanted to attend. While there was no dresscode, people were encouraged to come in formal attire, as a form of respect to the fallen.
The ceremony itself was a very serene happening, with no incidents. Korsavius held the opening speech, followed by John Revenent's rousing speech to bring justice upon the culprits & but also to praise those who aided in the rescue operation.
Once done, Korsavius took to the stage once more, reminding folks about the Malkalen incident, but also of Ishukone's resilience & efforts to rebuild from this tragedy.
At the closure of this, several I-RED officers appeared on stage, each carrying a small redwood box holding a medal. Korsavius called those who assisted in the rescue effort & were present to come on stage. Then he continued his speech, praising the bravery & generosity of those who assisted in saving countless lives as he pinned each of them with their commemorative medal.

The people who were honored that day were:

Morwen Lagann, through the presence of her liason, Suzelle Dullere
Jandice Ymladris
Samira Kernher
Lyn Farel
Utari Onzo (Not present due to unavailable wormhole connection)
Lunarisse Aspenstar
Foley Aberas Jones
Ibrahim Tash-Murkon
Alexa de'Crux

Once the medal ceremony was over, each honored guest was offered a chance to speak their minds, if they chose to. Several accepted this honour & gave their speech, remembering the tragedy of Tsuruma VIII but also reminding people that we all have a choice to do good, irrelevant of the cause one serves. Samira Kernher & Suzelle Dullere both held beautiful speeches, but it was Foley's speech that caught interest. Despite his speech being less fluid than the others, it was still as captivating as the others, as he came up with it on the spot, words from the heart.

As the speeches ended, the ceremony came to a closure, revealing the memorial monument erected for the victims of the Tsuruma tragedy. Through holoscreens, people could observe every angle of this monument. It was a huge Obsidian block carved in the shape of a diamond, hollowed out at the center to reveal a massive glimmering metal sculpture, vaguely resembling a falcon reaching for the sky.
The names of the fallen are engraved in the obsidian perimeter along the monument, so they would never be forgotten. Surrounding the monument from a short distance were cherry trees, whose blossom petals were slowly blowing across the monument, giving it a serene appearance. Benches under the trees gave visitors the opportunity to rest & contemplate the fate of the victims, but also those of the survivors.
But the reveal of this beautiful memorial was not over yet, as Korsavius activated the Memorial light beam, shooting brightly into the sky. The sculpture reflected the shine from the beam, dousing the surrounding memorial park in a beautiful, solemn way.

With the unveil of the memorial monument complete, Korsavius announced the closure of the memorial ceremony, thanking everyone for their attendance & reminded all that  visitation to the monument is free.

All in all, it was a very respectful ceremony, where everyone behaved. No speeches were interrupted, the silence from the crowd was staggering, bringing home the full weight of the tragedy on all those who were there. But there was also room to remember those who did survive and those who helped making sure that the death toll was far less than it could have been through their efforts.

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