True courage is demonstrated when an individual, facing extreme danger, stands up to protect a fellow human being. Such a heroic deed was exemplified through Faraaz Hossain’s sacrifice, raising high the flag of Courage, Friendship and Humanity. When let go by the terrorists, Faraaz refused to leave his friends Abinta Kabir and Tarishi Jain displaying exceptional strength of character in the final moments of his life, rising above all self interest. Faraaz Ayaaz Hossain, a student of Emory University, Atlanta, USA, was martyred in the horrific attack at Holey Artisan Bakery, Dhaka on July 1, 2016. He sacrificed his life for his friends exemplifying true friendship, standing steadfast against injustice. With his valiant sacrifice, Faraaz has connected a humanity of different race, religion and nationality bound by love and harmony.
Faraaz Ayaaz Hossain was born on 15th April 1996 to mother Simeen Hossain and father Waquer Hossain. He was brought up in his motherland Bangladesh, always taught to embrace open-mindedness yet to always remain deeply rooted in his values. A born leader, with a crystal clear sense of right and wrong, Faraaz was always destined for greatness.
"Before July 1st, if I was told that someone would sacrifice their life for their friends when asked to leave by terrorists during an attack, I would have said that nobody would do it. But if it had to be someone, it would be Faraaz" - Zanir Malani, Faraaz's close friend
Faraaz Ayaaz Hossain started school at the age of three, at Sir John Wilson until class 2. He went on to join the American International School of Dhaka from where he would graduate in 2014. August of 2014, Faraaz went on to pursue higher education at the prestigious Emory University in Atlanta where he would then be admitted into Emory's Goizueta Business School. There was no question in his ambition; he was determined to return to his home, Bangladesh. He aimed to follow in the footsteps of his mother, Simeen Hossain, Managing Director of Eskayef Pharmaceuticals Ltd, Transcom Consumer Products Ltd, and Transcom Distribution Ltd; as well as the footsteps of his grandfather, the Chairman of Transcom Group. Little did he know that his impact in our world would outdo any ambition he could have ever imagined.
"Faraaz always led, we followed" - Ryan Alam, Faraaz's close friend
Faraaz was a jovial and outgoing person. His passion lay in taking his country forward through his contribution to the corporate world, but he had an affinity for sports. He was captain of the American International School's volleyball team, and a patriotic fan of the Bangladesh cricket team, yet his true love was football. A crazed Manchester United fan, he religiously followed his favorite team and joked that he would one day be the team's manager. His favorite pass time was going for drives, and he loved spending time with family and friends. An exceptionally caring human being, he loved taking on responsibilities; he felt it was his duty to take care of everyone he loved. He felt that his responsibilities lay in Bangladesh. He had been, throughout his life, drawn to every aspect of Bangladesh, the country he knew he wanted to take forward.
In his 20 years, Faraaz had many successes.
Faraaz Hossain was martyred on 1st July 2016 at a tender age of 20 years. He gave his life in the selfless act of refusing to abandon his friends from the vicious attack of terrorists at the Holey Artisan Bakery.
On Friday, July 1, 2016, at the Holey Artisan Bakery of Gulshan, Dhaka, a crowd of Bangladeshis and foreigners gathered. Faraaz was there meeting his friends, Tarishi Jain and Abinta Kabir, over a cup of coffee. Ms. Kabir, an American citizen, joined Faraaz at Emory University on 2015, in Atlanta; she had just come back to Dhaka after having completed summer courses. Ms. Jain, who was from India, was studying at the University of California, Berkeley and was also back in Dhaka for the summer. This was the one day these three had together before each of them was to set off to travel with their respective families.
At about 8:45 in the evening, a group of heavily-armed men stormed and seized the cafe holding everyone hostage.
When the police arrived, they were met with heavy gunfire and grenades as they attempted to enter the restaurant. Two officers were killed and many others were injured. Over the course of the night, as the families of Faraaz, Tarishi and Abinta paced up and down the street outside the restaurant, not knowing whether the three would be coming back home. The militants had targeted non-Muslims and foreigners.
The day following the attack people began talking about a young man who sacrificed his life for his friends. According to witnesses who were inside the cafe during the siege, when the militants realized that Mr. Hossain was a Bangladeshi Muslim they told him to leave. He asked whether his two friends could come with him, and when the terrorists denied them their freedom, Faraaz chose to stay by their side till the end.
After nearly 12 hours of standoff, as dawn broke over the city, the army special forces finally succeeded in breaking the siege. Inside, they found the bodies of 20 victims and rescued at least 13 hostages. Among the dead, according to the police, were nine Italians, seven Japanese, an American, an Indian and two Bangladeshis.
July 1st, 2016, stands out as one of the darkest days in the history of the country. Amidst the chaotic darkness that befell the nation, Faraaz stood out as an example of Courage, Friendship and Humanity.
Faraaz Hossain has been an inspiration for millions around the world. Thousands of heart-warming messages have already been dedicated to him. The one thing that these messages have in common is that they all admired Faraazâ€™s Courage, Friendship and Humanity. You can read some of these messages below. And share your own at
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