Sara Saadat (Facebook)
Alliant celebrates life of Flight PS752 victim
Alliant International University scheduled a memorial event on campus Jan. 21 at 2:30 p.m. for student Sara Saadat, a passenger on Ukraine International Airlines Flight PS752, which was shot down and crashed in Iran on Jan. 8.
The flight took off from Tehran and was headed to Kiev. All 176 aboard the airliner perished, according to reports. It appears Saadat visited family in Iran and was on her way back to begin the spring 2020 term in the university’s clinical psychology program, according to Alliant.
News reports indicate Saadat’s sister, Saba, and mother were also on the flight.
By all accounts, this tragedy was an unintended result of international hostilities between Iran and the U.S. A U.S. drone strike killed top Iranian general Qasem Soleimani on Jan. 3. Iran retaliated Jan. 7 by firing ballistic missiles at two bases housing U.S. military personnel in Iraq. Iranian anti-aircraft defenses were on high alert following Iran’s missile attacks, expecting the U.S. to answer with air strikes on Iranian targets. The downing of Flight PS752 came just hours after Iran executed its missile attacks. Iranian leaders initially stated the jetliner crash was not related, but days later admitted it fired at and hit the Ukrainian airliner, mistaking it for a U.S. cruise missile. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani issued a statement saying an investigation found that “missiles fired due to human error.”
Plans for the private Jan. 21 celebration of life included a slide show; poems; and students, faculty and local members of Saadat’s family sharing memories, according to Cielo Villasenor, Alliant communications director.