Ali Mcheik

43-year old Ali Mcheik, from Shaath in the Bekaa, is not only the victim of the explosion in the Port of Beirut, moreover, he has been the victim of the deteriorating economic situation in Lebanon, that forced his previous employer to lay off a large number of workers, including himself. He wanted to give his children quality education. He did not want them to live the hardships he had to go through when he dropped out of school.

Two months after being forced to leave his job, and trying to find an opportunity that would help him support his family, Ali finally started a new job as a daily worker in a ship loading and unloading company, for 15000 LBP a day.

Despite his tough living conditions, Ali looked happier than many. Maybe his good standing with people eased his suffering.

On the 4th of August, Ali left his job at the end of his shift, but he was late to get home. His wife Zeinab worried for him and called him to check up on him. He told her he was on his way back home, when his manager called him and told him a ship anchored at the harbor, and they need some workers to unload the shipment. Ali agreed to go back to the Port to work until the early morning hours for 5000 LBP per hour, overtime.

Zeinab did not know this would be their last call, and death will snatch her husband away from her and from his family… When the news spread about the explosion's site, she rushed to the wheat silos where he was working, looking for him. She saw destruction and rubble all around. She started searching in hospitals, but did not find him. She spent the next two days sitting on the sidewalks near the Port. She did not want to believe she lost Ali. She clung to an impossible hope, until the last minute.

On the morning of the third day, a body appeared under the ruins of the wheat silos… On that same day, a photo of Ali was hanging on the wall of his home.

Zeinab is in pain, her voice is crying… Do people feel death is near? Two days before the explosion, it was Eid Al-Adha, and Ali, for the first time in a long time, did not spend the eid in his village with his brothers and sisters, but instead, he chose to stay home with his small family. It is as if he wanted to give them a little more happiness before he leaves them forever. He bought them so many things, and they spent happy moments together, moments they will never forget…

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