She left home without breakfast: Mother of Kaaj attack victim

Fatima’s portrait in her room along with her clothes.

Fatima, 17, a resident of the Dasht-e-Barchi area in the west of Kabul, was so excited for a practice college entrance exam as she left home without having breakfast just one hour before she was killed in a suicide attack that targeted a classroom packed with hundreds of young and ambitious female students on Friday morning, Sept. 30. That was the last time she picked up her pen to answer the questions she prepared for intensely day and night for the last year.

Her dream was to become a doctor and help her family and the people.

Fatima’s father, Abdul, is a municipality worker who got back to work only a few after the death of his daughter because if he didn’t there was a chance he would have lost his job.

Her mother, Gul Chaman, is still in shock after losing her young daughter. She is yet to accept the fact that her daughter is no more.

Fatima’s mother looking to the belongings left by her daughter.

“Fatima was a kind girl and responsible. He continued her studies while facing many hardships. To help Fatima to achieve her dreams, my husband and I were working to afford her needs,” said Gul Chaman.

“Fatima was so excited when she was informed about the university entrance exam. She was intensely preparing for it and studying day and night,” her mother said.

Fatima attended the practice exam to prepare for the university exams that will happen on Thursday, Oct. 6, countrywide, but Friday, Sept. 30, was the last day she picked her pen to write.

A small table where Fatima used to study at nights, using a lamp she bought from a nearby market.

That day she went to the Kaaj tutoring center near their home early morning without having breakfast because she was so excited, her mother said.

“When I found out that the blast had happened, I rushed to call Fatima, but her phone was picked up by another person who asked me to come to Ali Jenah Hospital,” Gul Chaman said.

Fatima was in the emergency ward at the hospital when her mother arrived. She was still hopeful to see her daughter there, but soon she found that Fatima was no more.

Fatima’s elder brother, Husain, is an engineering student at Balkh University. He says her sister’s loss is unbearable and an irreversible loss to him and his 7-member family.

Fatima’s brother, Hussain. He rushed to come home after he was informed about his sister’s death on Sept. 30.

“The night before the blast, she called me and informed me about the time of the exam,” Hussain said. “I was shocked. I lost my consciousness and my friends sent me home.”

The room where Fatima used to do her homework and prepare for the university entrance exam.

There are dozens of other Fatimas with even more horrible and heart-breaking stories who lost their lives in the deadly attack. They all were from vulnerable families whose hopes were only to focus on education and make a bright future for themselves and their families. The majority of the victims were girls of the same age and a bit elder than Fatima. Over 300 students attended the exam, and over 140 of them were either killed or wounded in the deadly incident.