RAS AL KHAIMAH // The family of a serviceman killed in the line of duty in Yemen, on Wednesday chose to focus on their pride rather than grief at his funeral.
Serviceman Hassan Abdullah Al Bishir died while participating in the Saudi-led coalition against Houthi forces in Yemen. Funeral prayers were held after Al Duhur prayers at Sheikh Zayed Mosque in RAK before he was laid to rest in Al Salihiya Cemetery.
Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah, and the Crown Prince, Sheikh Mohammed bin Saud, were among those performing funeral prayers.
His brother, Hussein Al Bishir, said that despite the news of his younger brother’s death, it was a day of joy for the family.
“His martyrdom is a badge of honour to our family, and Hassan died doing what he loved most – serving and defending his country,” said the 38-year-old, who works for the Sheikh Zayed Housing Programme. “Our nation deserves the sacrifices of its own children and more. We will always be there to respond to the call of duty and do what we can to protect this great country of ours and its leaders.”
He last saw his brother on April 20, before he was deployed to Yemen. Al Bishir, who was 26, finished high school in RAK and had been serving in the military for the past five years.
He was the youngest of four brothers, the others being Hussein, Ismail and Mohammed, and two sisters. He lived in Al Dhait with his parents. After the burial, hundreds of well-wishers offered their condolences to his 65-year-old father, who stood proud while servicemen, relatives and friends came to pay their respects.
But the toll of seeing his youngest son laid to rest made the father break down in tears as the other sons and family members comforted each other.
Al Bishir was single but was keen to start a family.
“He was hoping to build a house after he finished his service and start searching for a bride to settle down with,” said Hussein. “My parents took the news of his martyrdom with great pride. Proud to have their youngest son martyred in the line of duty. He brought the family pride and honour in his sacrifice.”
The serviceman was a good Muslim, said his brother Ismail.
“He was a devout man, he had carried Al Umrah several times before, the last being in 2014,” he said. “He was an outgoing person, loving, caring, especially to his friends and family members. May he rest in peace.”
Mohammed Al Shihi was one of the well-wishers who paid his respects to the grieving family.
“RAK has offered many of its children to protect our country and our brothers in Yemen, and today we pay our respects to the family who lost a son while performing an honourable duty,” said the 41-year-old Emirati.
The General Command of the Armed Forces extended its sincere condolences to the soldier’s family and prayed to Allah for his soul to rest in peace and for his family to find solace.