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Tech community rocked by deaths of Atta Elayyan and Syed Jahandad Ali

18 Mar 2019
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As the dust settles in the aftermath of the Christchurch shooting, the New Zealand tech community mourns the loss of two of its own.

50 people were killed by a gunman who opened fire at a mosque last Friday - among them, Atta Elayyan and Syed Jahandad Ali.

Atta Elayyan, 33, was the CEO of Lazyworm Applications.

Windows Central executive editor Daniel Rubino said, “Elayyan was one of the most enthusiastic MVP developers on Windows Phone and Microsoft - he always interacted with the Windows Central community with passion and idealism.

Elayyan and his team created the app MetroTube, which “quickly became one of the banner apps for the growing Windows Phone ecosystem.”

Microsoft commercial software engineering principal software engineer Nigel Parker called Elayyan “a genuine leader, talented designer, and inspiring entrepreneur.”

Elayyan was also a prominent figure in the local futsal community, playing as goalkeeper for the national and Canterbury men’s futsal teams.

He leaves behind his wife Farah and his two-year-old daughter Aya.

A givealittle campaign has been set up by his colleague Elias Billeh to support his family here.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella made a statement about the shooting saying, “Hate and violence have no place in our society. We mourn all the victims of the horrific attack in New Zealand including Atta Elayyan and Syed Jahandad Ali, who were part of our Microsoft MVP and partner communities. Our hearts are with the victims’ families and loved ones.”

Syed Jahandad Ali, 43, was the senior Microsoft Dynamics developer at Intergen.

Intergen CEO Simon Bright expressed his condolences in a statement on LinkedIn.

“I am very sad to share with you that our highly respected and much-loved colleague Syed Ali has lost his life in the terrorist attack which took place on Friday.”

“My deepest sympathies and thoughts are with Syed’s family, his wife Amna and their children, his friends and co-workers.”  

“My thoughts are with everyone who has been impacted by this tragic attack. Our hearts are with each of you, your families, and your friends.”

Animation Research CEO Cheryl Adams described him as a “kind, generous, hardworking man who cared deeply about his beautiful family and the wonderful life he was providing for them here in New Zealand.”