By Maria Semerdjian
Joziane Shedid – that was her name.
After a difficult search, we had managed to identify the blood-soaked young woman in a picture taken by Reuters photographer Hasan Shaaban in the wake of a powerful bomb explosion in Beirut.
We found it difficult to identity the girl because at first we didn’t realize she was the older sister of Jennifer Shedid, another bomb victim Hasan photographed that fateful day, who was even more severely injured and almost lost her life.
We searched from clinic to clinic and finally found out that the young woman we were looking for was at the Lebanese Canadian Hospital. When we arrived, we saw Jennifer’s mother and asked if she knew the girl from the photograph. “That’s my daughter,“ she replied immediately, and pointed over at Joziane.
The dark-haired young woman was sitting there with members of her family, a cross around her delicate neck and a picture of the Virgin Mary in her frail hands. She welcomed us with a generous smile and Hasan and I went with her into another room to hear about her experience.
“I have told this story many times to different people in my family, but each time I retell it, I have a different impression. I realize that sometimes I forget information, which I think is important for people and the press to know,” said Joziane. “I want to be as detailed as possible so people know what really happened to us.”