Bodies are seen in a restaurant at the site of an attack on a hotel complex in Nairobi, Kenya, Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2019. (AP Photo/Khalil Senosi)

NAIROBI - A South African/British citizen, an American who survived the 9/11 attacks and two best friends from Kenya who worked to help Somalia were among at least 14 people killed when Somali militants raided a posh hotel complex in Nairobi.

Following are details on them:


Luke Potter, who held dual South African and British citizenship, worked for Gatsby Africa as head of their forestry and tea portfolio.

According to News24, Potter was born and bred in Johannesburg and had also spent time in KwaZulu-Natal.

He described himself on his company website as loving water-sports, camping, hiking and talking about adventures outside the city. He had only recently moved to Nairobi from Britain.

"I strongly believe in the need for societies to offer as equal an opportunity as possible to all, and that, while economic competitiveness is essential to build a country, long-term stability is not achievable unless the gains are widely spread," he said on the website. 

Gatsby Africa in a statement said it was saddened to confirm Potter's death in the terror attack. 

"Luke had devoted the past ten years of his career to helping some of the poorest and most vulnerable people in the world.  He had worked with us for three and a half years, carrying out assignments across East Africa. 

"Luke was instrumental in establishing our forestry programme and team in Kenya, and provided crucial leadership, guidance and support to our Tanzanian forestry programme and our tea programmes in Rwanda and Tanzania. 

"We share the grief of his family, partner, daughter and friends.  Our thoughts and deepest condolences are with them." 


"It is with a heavy heart that I have to report that my brother Jason Spindler passed away this morning during a terror attack in Nairobi, Kenya. Jason was a survivor of 9-11 and a fighter. I am sure he gave them hell!", his brother Jonathan posted on Facebook.

Spindler was CEO of investment firm I-Dev International.

He studied business at the University of Texas and law at New York University, according to his Facebook page.

Most of his pictures showed him pursuing his passion of rock climbing in beautiful places. Spindler had also served with the U.S. Peace Corps in Peru.

"Know you are mountain climbing with the angels tonight, Jason. You lived fully and beautifully, but you left us far too soon," wrote one Facebook friend.


Kenyan development professionals Abdalla Dahir and Feisal Ahmed, from consulting firm Adam Smith International (ASI), were having lunch together at the Secret Garden restaurant in the grounds of the hotel when the suicide bomber struck.

Friends and relatives described Ahmed, whose widow is seven months pregnant, and Dahir as inseparable.

Both worked on economic programmes trying to improve life in Somalia, home to the militant group that claimed responsibility for the attack.

"He (Ahmed) was an outgoing funny guy, charismatic. He was loved by everybody," said Mohammed Abdilatif, a close friend and colleague of Ahmed.

On LinkedIn, Dahir said he was passionate about photography and sharing "the stories of vulnerable people especially the voiceless victims of violence in order to educate the world about the detrimental impacts of war."

"They were close buddies," said Ahmed’s brother-in-law Abdullahi Keinan. "They were so close, people said they would die together."

On Wednesday, their bodies left the mortuary together for a joint funeral.

Reuters and IOL