Dutch village grieves loss of entire family on MH17 - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Dutch village grieves loss of entire family on MH17

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A family of six on their way to a holiday in Malaysia all perished aboard the flight. (Source: CNN) A family of six on their way to a holiday in Malaysia all perished aboard the flight. (Source: CNN)

NEERKANT, Netherlands (CNN) - A village outside of Amsterdam is reeling after finding out an entire family is dead.

They were on Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, which was shot down over Ukraine on Thursday.

A teenager is unable to understand why her friend is gone.

She wanted to talk - "We'll do it for Jinte,” her friend said - but she couldn't speak.

Jinte, 15, was on MH17 with her parents, brother and two sisters heading on their summer holiday to Kuala Lumpur.

“She was all the time happy,” Elaine Manders said. “Every day we saw her. She was a good friend. Every day we biked to school together.”

Elaine wrote a note for Jinte, saying she is “here” with us.

People from across this community were bringing tributes and lighting candles on Saturday. A group of passing cyclists stopped for a moment to pay their respects. A man who didn't know the family and isn't from here felt compelled to drive here to say a prayer and leave flowers.

Throughout the village, rows of houses were flying their flags at half-mast.

“Numb, you stop thinking basically,” Peter Van Der Burg said. “You have to let it sink in.”

This is a tight-knit community. Everybody knew the family somehow.

The community is still in  a very deep level of shock because it was a very well-known family. People are still trying to handle the situation.

Among the tributes at the memorial service at the elementary school where the youngest of the children went were hearts with names of all of the family members - six of them. They wrote notes at the memorial and stuck them to a tree.

One was addressed to Brett, the eldest son, saying "I'll miss you, dear family; you didn't deserve this." A note from one of the friends of one of the girls said, "You will now be a bright star," and a message from a teacher: "I can't believe I won't see you again." One message is actually from the children's babysitter and so has all the names of the children. She says, "No words, and then one, simply, why?"

“We don't understand it,” Nikkie Sijben said. “We think she will turn up, but she can't. She won't.”

Copyright 2014 CNN. All rights reserved.

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