WHAT has been described as the “mass murder” of passengers on Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 has had a tragic impact on Lithgow, with the fear that a young Lithgow woman is among the dead.
The Northern Territory News and Territorian was yesterday afternoon reporting that among the almost 300 passengers booked on the doomed flight was Emma Bell, aged in her early 20s, a graduate of Lithgow High School.
The newspaper said that the woman’s students and workmates at a Northern Territory school were devastated.
It said that Ms Bell’s family had been informed.
Her Facebook profile states that after completing her Higher School Certificate at Lithgow High School Ms Bell undertook a teaching degree at Griffith University.
She has been teaching at the school at Maningrida, a remote Aboriginal community in Arnhem Land.
It is understood she was on an overseas holiday and only last month posted on Facebook a photograph of herself and a friend in Guatamala.
It is currently school holidays in the Northern Territory.
The News said it had been confirmed that Ms Bell had been booked aboard flight MH17 when it was allegedly shot down by a ground-to-air missile near the Ukraine-Russia border, killing all on board.
The plane was en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur at the time.
The Department of Foreign Affairs in Canberra was yesterday afternoon refusing to release the names of the 27 Australians on board.
There was a similar response from Malaysian Airlines.
An inquiry directed to Lithgow High School brought the response there had been an instruction to release no information relating to its former students.
And Lithgow police said they had received no advice.