Monday, September 11, 2006

Memorial of a Friend

I went back to Eli last night for the official memorial service for Amichai. There were several thousand people there, including the soldiers that fought under his command and watched him fall. There was a dvar Torah from R' Eli Sadan, the head of the Yeshiva in Eli, friends of his got up and spoke about him, his smile, his sense of humor, his natural ability to lead, and his strong idealogy. There was a twenty minute video with pictures of him growing up, friends of his talking about him from his yeshiva, his bnei akiva group, etc, etc. The two speeches that stuck out the most to me was Effie Eitams, and the commander of Golani 51. I thought at first I didnt understand Eitam, but I read in the news today what I thought he said. Being as it was a memorial service for a soldier who was killed in Lebanon, i didnt think it was appropriate for him to use the time to spell out his political parties agenda for dealing with Israeli-Arabs and Palestinians. The last speech was Yaniv Asor, commander of Golani 51. He showed, using sattelite images, exactly how the fight happened that Amichai was killed in. where each company was sitting, where their targets were, etc. Ro'i Klein was with Amichai and they identified Hezbolla terrorists and opened fire on them. The terrorists returned fire, and Amichai took his team in an effort to surround the enemy. They didn't know it, but there was a big wall blocking their way, and they got stuck in a dead end. They exchanged fire and grenades with the enemy, and then Amichai got on the radio. "Need backup, there are injured soldiers here." Someone got on the radio to answer him, but Amichai didnt answer anymore. He was gone. Ro'i Klein then took his men to rescue Amichai's team, and they also got stuck in the exchange of fire. Then a grenade was thrown at them, and Ro'i jumped on it, saving the lives of the soldiers around him by sacrificing his own, while screaming "Shma Yisrael!" It took a full day of fighting to finally remove all the wounded and killed. Yaniv then spoke about what Golani meant to him, and what it should mean to all of us. How it is a family, it symbolizes strength. He quoted Rav Kook from Midot Reiya (he is not religious, but he knew the crowd he was talking to..), and said Golani is about humility. Then the evening ended and we went home.

Tonight I'm going to a wedding of another friend from the unit. The same guys who were at the memorial will be at the wedding. Me'avalut l'simcha. From mourning to joy.


Blogger menachem said...

golani is about humility? i dont know about that

2:48 PM  

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