May King Hussein Rest in Peace

15 years ago, King Hussein of Jordan, died on this date. 7 February 1999 has been such a sad day on Jordan and all Jordanians, I remember the school sending us home, we were on our way home, and all the streets were empty and silent, than we found mom crying saying King Hussein has passed away. I remember being so shocked.

King Hussein died of cancer. He was, at the time of his death, one of the longest-serving leaders in international politics. He had been the King of Jordan for over 46 years. King Hussein’s funeral was held on 8 February 1999 in the presence of all five of his sons, foreign dignitaries and statesmen, and an estimated 800,000 Jordanians.

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Though King Abduallah was declared King of Jordan on the same day, no one, not even he felt like celebrating. Jordan had a month or so to grieve than on the coronation day of Queen Rania, a new era has begun. It felt real then.

And now, we hold his memory with love and a light sadness, I always try to think of him as he was not as he died. Cancer is such a harsh disease and he fought like a lion. May he rest in peace.

The following photographs were taken by my mother who insisted that my brothers and I attend the parade, she said: “Jordan is filled with history, it’s time for you to see it being made.” And it was one of the most goosebumps-worthy-moments of my life, I was 13 years old, Tariq was 11 and Islam was 7.

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