Tragedy in Turkey: Basketball Player Nilay Aydogan Killed by Devastating Earthquake

Aydogan, a promising 30-year old basketball player who played for the Turkish Super League side Cankaya University, was tragically taken away following the recent devasating earthquake. The athlete had been visiting her grandmother in Malayta when disaster struck, completely crumbling the apartment block they were housed in. In the midst of this crisis and heartache, let us remember to honor their lives with trempidation and recognize Aydogan’s dream and promise as a powerful and inspirational example of pursuing your dreams without fail or fear. Furthermore let us continue to support those affected by the earthquake and spread positivity in their honor.

Nilay Aydogan was undoubtedly a beloved national player; her influence known and appreciated throughout the basketball world. Despite the terrible tragedy that struck while she was visiting her grandmother in Malayta, there is comfort to be found in knowing Aydogan touched the lives of so many with her determination and dedication to the sport. The Turkish Basketball Federation remarked that they have “learned this with deep sadness”; a sentiment matched by all who were fortunate enough to come into contact with Aydogan’s gracious spirit. May we honor not only her passing, but also all she accomplished in life through appreciation and remembrance.

In midst of the destruction caused by the recent earthquake in Turkey, we still offer our sincere condolences to the family, relatives and basketball community of Malayta’s Aydogan for her untimely passing. The game that she last played for Cankaya was a remarkable victory against Hatayspor, giving a glimmer of hope even in midst of tragedy. The search for survivors continues and we pray that everyone is lucky enough to meet their loved ones again as the death toll continues to rise. May God have mercy on every single soul who has been affected by this natural disaster and give strength to those who are still searching for their fellow countrymen and women.

As rescue efforts for those affected by the earthquake continue, one of the high profile sporting individuals whose fate hangs in the balance is Christian Atsu. Despite recent reports saying he had been found and was in hospital, Hatayspor ace Atsu remains missing. His family and friends in Ghana, where he is from, are understandably worried about his safety during this difficult time. While so many tragedies have been caused by this natural disaster, the world’s collective thoughts remain with Christian and many others who are still unaccounted for. Let us be inspired to join together to keep praying and pushing forward with his search so that they may all be able return back home safely soon.

The tragedy in the region last week brought shock and devastation to everybody. The loss of life was terrible, but some miracles did occur – a number of Ghana international teammates were pulled from the rubble alive. The news that Hatayspor’s sporting director is still missing has sent waves of sadness through the community and led to the club withdrawing from the remainder of their season. Gaziantep FK have also reportedly expressed wanting to leave the league given their proximity to the epicentre, but there are plans for 17 teams to continue – undoubtedly made easier by the fact that all rights held by these affected clubs will be kept intact. During such heartbreaking times, it is uplifting that some hope can be found among such incredible hardship and loss.

Amid the tragedy that has befallen the nation of Turkey following a magnitude 7.0 earthquake, one hero stands out: Ahmet Eyup Turkaslan, goalkeeper for Yeni Malatyaspor soccer team in the Turkish second division. Despite the sadness over his loss and the devastation that was caused by this catastrophe, Yeni Malatyaspor honors their goalkeeper as a beautiful person who made it his duty to bravely face the quake head on until its tragic conclusion. His bravery and courage will not soon be forgotten, even among those still grappling with the consequences of this heartbreaking event. Indeed, amidst such tragedy there is something truly inspirational in Turkaslan’s actions and serving as an example of heroism even in moments of great sorrow.

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