As the world continues mourning for the innocent lives lost in the Brussels terrorist attacks, one photo captured the aftermath of the bombings like no other.
The woman with shredded clothes, soot-covered hair, and blood running down her face as she gripped the airport seat moments after Tuesday’s blasts has been identified as Nidhi Chaphekar.
The 40-year-old mother of two from Mumbai is a Jet Airways flight attendant whose family in India saw the photo that quickly went viral following the attacks.
“We were searching through the Internet to try to get details of the blasts when we saw the pics,” her brother-in-law, Nilesh Chaphekar, said. “The first reaction was, ‘She’s alive. By God’s grace, she is alive.’”
Now, as the image continues being shared by thousands on social media, the hashtag #PrayForNidhi accompanies it.
Chaphekar has worked as a Mumbai-based flight attendant for two decades and her family wants nothing more than to travel to Brussels to be by her side.
Brussels airports remain closed as her husband, their children, an 11-year-old daughter and 14-year-old son, and other family members try to figure out ways to get to her.
“We’ve got visas now, but we are still not sure exactly what route we should take to reach her as soon as possible,” Nilesh said. “We are trying to figure out the nearest airport we can fly into.”
For now, all they can do is continue receiving medical updates on their beloved Nidhi from afar.
“The last medical update we’ve had is that she’s responding well to medication,” Nilesh added. “We have been told there are some fractures and burns but we don’t know the extent.”
(Photo: Ketevan Kardava/ Georgian Public Broadcaster via AP)