Pilot spoke to parents before Perak helicopter crash, Latest Singapore News - The New Paper

Pilot spoke to parents before Perak helicopter crash

GEORGE TOWN – The parents of Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) Commander Firdaus Ramli had just chatted with him over the phone barely an hour before his tragic death on April 23.

Mr Firdaus' sister Alya Ramli, 27, said: “This cannot have happened. I can’t believe my brother is gone. Just (in the morning on April 23), I heard my parents talking to him over the phone.

“About an hour later, we got the distressing news about his death.”

Mr Firdaus, 44, was the pilot of one of the helicopters which crashed in Lumut, Perak.

Ms Alya said her brother would always call their parents before he went off on a flight or mission.

The family got together recently during Hari Raya when they went to Lumut to celebrate the occasion with him.

“That was the last time I saw him,” she said in between being in tears at their residence in Pantai Jerejak, Penang.

About a dozen reporters went to the double-storey house, which was quiet with all its doors shut except when a relative emerged to collect food from a delivery man.

Ms Alya, who came out to speak to reporters briefly, declined to have her picture taken. She said that news of her brother’s death was relayed by his wife, who is based in Sabah, at about 10am then.

“My parents have left for the RMN base in Lumut to obtain more information and complete the process of bringing my brother’s remains home,” she said.

One of Mr Firdaus’ relatives, who wanted to be known only as Ms Syahirah, said the deceased had been with the navy for over 20 years.

“He was based in Kota Kinabalu since two years ago,” she said.

Mr Firdaus was among 10 crew members who died after two naval helicopters collided during training at the navy base stadium in Lumut.

It is understood that he was the pilot of the HOM M503-3 helicopter with seven crew members on board.

The aircraft belonged to Squadron 503 which is based in Kota Kinabalu. – THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK