Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Rest in peace Florian...

We met only once. It was during the networking part of a trade mission on biomass in Kiev, November last year. It was friendship at first sight. Later during the reception in the evening I had a chance to ask him dozens of questions about how and most importantly why a young man from the Netherlands ends up in Ukraine. It's not often I get to meet young people who moved from the Netherlands to Ukraine and not the other way around. I still had hundreds of questions. I was looking forward to a coffee or a lunch together during my vacation in Kiev next May.

But then on 5th of January this appeared on my FB News Feed: "Florian Van Dijck has been operated in Kyiv and now moved to the Netherlands for further treatment. Leave your messages for Florian here, Masha & family will make sure he receives your messages. He needs your support." I wished him to get better soon, but couldn't get much sense out of this message. I was checking his profile every day, hoping there would be more information, but in vain. Finally, some three weeks later I have sent him a message: "What's up with you? The messages on your wall are a little scary. They make me worry. I hope you're not incurably ill. Is it possible to visit you? Get well soon!"

The same day I received a reply:
" Hi Sasha, Unfortunately I am incurably ill and according to the doctors I only have a few weeks. I disagree and I am now in treatment in a hospital in Austria. I have gastric cancer with metastases.
Thank you for all your messages, I don't give up and think the treatment here can help. Please forgive me if I don't answer your following messages, then probably something went wrong somewhere along the way...
It was nice to get to know you Sasha!
Groetjes, Florian"

That's all I have now. No friend anymore, no answers to my questions. He would have turned 28 in a little more than two weeks. I just hope there is some kind of a greater meaning in his death. I hope his death makes this world a little better somehow. He was too great of a person to be wasted just like that...


  1. That's such a sad story...
    You can find some things about him via Google. Did you know he loved to play the cello? (
    Argh... It makes this story only worse.

    I hope his death had a greater meaning too.

  2. I was fortunate enough to teach Florian back in 2002-3. He was one of those students who stood out. We stayed in contact after he graduated and went to work for Logitracon. Like so many people whose lives were made all the richer because our paths crossed Florian's, I will miss him and I wish his family and friends "veel sterkte" in the coming days, weeks, months and years.

  3. Hi Sasja, triest, oneerlijk, veel sterkte, Henk Krooi

  4. Hi Sasja, I do not know you, but whilst surfing on the internet I found your spot, and read about Florian.
    He was a college of mine for several years, although he was most of the time in Kiev, and I worked in Holland.
    He was a very nice person, always interested in other people, and his illness was a great shock.
    I went to his funeral also, which was very impressive.
    He will be missed a lot...

    Regards, Ralph

  5. Hi Sasja,

    just saw your post for the first time. It has been a tough blow on our family and since then we try to make the most of it and commemorate him in the best possible way.

    If you have any questions, just ask on Facebook.

    Kind regards, Benjamin van Dijck (younger brother of Florian)


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