NEW YORK — A Canadian couple returning from vacation in Vietnam. An American who worked in Asia for IBM. A group of Chinese calligraphers who had attended an exhibition in Malaysia.
All of them were aboard Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, which remained unaccounted for Saturday many hours after it was supposed to have landed at dawn in Beijing with 239 people on board, most of them from China. Five passengers were under the age of 4.
By Saturday night, the families of the passengers had few answers about what happened and dwindling hope that they would see their loved ones again.
One passenger was Philip Wood, 50, an IBM employee who was living in the Malaysian capital, Kuala Lumpur, where the flight originated. His family in Texas had little information about the flight beyond what had been reported in the media.
“We’re all sticking together,” his father, Aubrey Wood, said Saturday from his home in Keller, Texas. “What can you do? What can you say?”
Philip Wood, who previously lived in Beijing, has two sons in Texas — the younger one is a student at Texas A&M University.
The two other Americans listed on the flight manifest were Nicole Meng, 4, and Yan Zhang, 2.
The State Department confirmed that three US citizens were on board.
The two Canadian citizens on board were Muktesh Mukherjee, 42, and Xiaomo Bai, 37, a married couple living in Beijing.
A group of as many as 24 painters and calligraphers were returning from an exhibition and a cultural exchange conference in Kuala Lumpur.
The conference was dedicated to the “Chinese Dream” and intended to celebrate the 40th anniversary of diplomatic relations between China and Malaysia.
There were also people aboard from Malaysia, Indonesia, Australia, India, France, New Zealand, Ukraine, Russia, Italy, the Netherlands and Austria, according to the manifest.