Teacher recognised MH17 victim as former Wodonga student right away

Wodonga resident Lindsay Hanchett and his wife Carolyn sign the MH17 condolence book at Wodonga Council’s offices in Hovell Street yesterday. Picture: PETER MERKESTEYN

Wodonga resident Lindsay Hanchett and his wife Carolyn sign the MH17 condolence book at Wodonga Council’s offices in Hovell Street yesterday. Picture: PETER MERKESTEYN

THE recognition hit Fred Bramich like a shot.

The former Wodonga Secondary School teacher was watching ABC’s broadcast as the horror of MH17 and the victims claimed unfolded, when a photograph of one of his former pupils flashed on the screen.

Howard Horder, who attended Wodonga Secondary until 1967, was onboard the flight, returning home to Queensland with his wife.

“It really gave me a shock,” he said.

“I saw the photo and heard the name and thought, ‘God, that’s him’.

“It was very sad to see.”

Mr Bramich only taught at the school for a brief time, but the city of Wodonga and the students he taught left an impression on him, including Mr Horder.

“He was certainly a very popular member of the school, not a troublemaker... he was a very affable fellow,” he said.

“He played a bit of sport and was on the school’s baseball team.”

Yesterday, Wodonga Council placed a condolence book at its Hovell Street offices for any member of the local community wishing to pay their respects to the lives lost on MH17.

Similar books have also been provided to other councils in North East Victoria from the Victorian government.

Up to 18 Victorians were among the 39 Australian citizens and residents on the flight.

All pages from the books across the state will be collated and compiled into a condolence book at a later date.

Smartphone
Tablet - Narrow
Tablet - Wide
Desktop