(JNS.org) A 10-year-old Jewish girl was one of five people killed last Friday when a driver intentionally plowed his car into pedestrians on a busy street in Melbourne, Australia.
The Jewish victim, Thalia Hakin, was with her 9-year-old sister and her mother—both of whom were injured and remained hospitalized as of Sunday—at the time of the incident, Chabad.org reported. Although the driver deliberately rammed his car into the crowd in Melbourne, it was not a terrorism-related incident, police said. At least 20 people were reportedly injured.
“Thalia was such a sweet, happy, girl—always with a smile on her face,” said Mushky Raskin, co-director of the Chabad McKinnon Jewish Centre in Melbourne, according to Chabad.org. “She loved everything she was learning about Judaism and was always so ready to share. She was such an eager participant in Shabbat celebrations, holiday events and whatever else was going on.”
Raskin added that it is “really too early to know what can even be done” for the Hakin family, but that “there have been so many offers for meals, visits—any way to support the family. People just want to say, ‘We are here, and we care.’”