As International AIDS Vaccine Initiative delegates to the AIDS 2014 conference in Melbourne take part in commemorations and tributes to those HIV/AIDS experts who lost their lives on Flight MH17, the entire IAVI global community extends our deepest condolences to the families, friends and colleagues of these six remarkable people:
- Pim de Kuijer, lobbyist at Aids Fonds/STOP AIDS NOW!, an inspiring campaigner for the promotion of human rights and the fight against HIV/AIDS, whose passion, advice and friendship will be deeply missed.
- Joep Lange, head of the Department of Global Health at the University of Amsterdam’s Academic Medical Center (AMC) and Executive Scientific Director of the Amsterdam Institute for Global Health and Development (AIGHD), a leading light in advancing the science of and access to HIV treatment and prevention.
- Jacqueline van Tongeren, AIGHD communications director and partner of Joep Lange, member of the board of ArtAIDS and previously a nurse for HIV patients.
- Martine de Schutter, Program Manager at Aids Fonds/STOP AIDS NOW!, a cultural anthropologist specializing in gender, sexual health and HIV/AIDS, and deeply committed to the right to good health for all.
- Lucie van Mens, Director of Program Development and Support at The Female Health Company, a strong and committed advocate to improving the sexual health of women and their families.
- Glenn Raymond Thomas, a media officer for the World Health Organization and former BBC journalist remembered as a tireless advocate.
We are proud to have worked alongside these six people and their losses will be deeply felt. But as we mourn, we resolve to pay tribute to their memories by reinforcing our commitment and resolve to achieving a world without HIV/AIDS.