Hassan Kamel Haidar
Hassan grew up with ten siblings in a one-room apartment, in the Laylaki neighborhood, in the southern suburb of Beirut.
For financial reasons, Hassan did not finish school. At eleven, he started working to provide for his family. Until the day he died, he was the only provider for his 90-year old mother. He had her listed on his social security benefits, and supported her financially and with everything she needed. She does not stop crying; her eyes are burning from sadness; her loss is greater than she could ever bear.
Hassan was passionate about music… He wanted a career in the music industry, but reality was far from his dreams. He remained a maintenance worker at the Port of Beirut silos, for the last thirty years.
He was loving, affectionate, kind, and sensitive. He embraced all the qualities of a real artist. Hassan loved and studied music, he became a guitar player, and a member of the professional musicians' syndicate.
His 15-year old son Jad, inherited his father's love for music, and dreamed of becoming an artist just like him… They were a great duet: the father plays the music, and his son sings the lyrics.
Music touches the spirit, it makes everything more beautiful. Hassan believed this, and his spirit was a beautiful one indeed. He used to tell his children that they have to love music, to be able to love life and people.
As a father, Hassan dreamed of a bright future for his three children. He did not want them to live his life. He wanted them to finish school… He taught them to be always truthful, and to stay away from lies and deceit, and to help others as much as they can.
A week before the explosion, Hassan told his friend that he wants to retire, that he is tired of working in the silos. On August 4, he was off, but he went to work anyway… When the first fire erupted, he wanted to move his car away from the fire. But, as soon as he started the car, a huge explosion rocked all of Beirut. Hassan's heart stopped immediately as a result of the deafening explosion sound.
In memory of Hassan the fighter, and the artist, and in the language he loved the most –music, his son Jad paid him a tribute with a special chant written by poet Moussa Farhat and composed by Mohamed Fneish:
كنت انشدلك وتقول انت بصوتي متهني كرامة روحك رح غني مش انت عازف عواد من لحنك تعزف أني وافترقنا وصرنا “بعاد مين بيعزفلي حزني؟ لون الاسود بالتفجير محى وجودك يومية. ... جمعات العيلة بتصير با بيي منا هيي