Fallen soldiers recalled at Yad Lebanim memorial (JERUSALEM POST) By MELANIE LIDMAN 04/24/12)
JERUSALEM POST Articles-Index-Top
“For bereaved families, time stops when you get the terrible news… it
cuts your life in two: what was before, and what will never be
again,” Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu told more than 200 soldiers
and bereaved families gathered for the Yad Lebanim Memorial for the
Fallen in Israel’s Wars.
“When you hear the siren tonight, we will turn into one family, and
the citizens of Israel will be united in our remembrance,” Netanyahu
said at the ceremony, where he was joined by Chief Rabbis Yona
Metzger and Shlomo Amar, as well as Knesset speaker Reuven Rivlin and
representatives of the police, army, and Home Front Command.
Yad Lebanim (“A Memorial for the Sons”) is the organization that
supports bereaved families in cooperation with the Defense Ministry
and official government bodies. The Jerusalem memorial, located near
the government quarter, is the central memorial for soldiers killed
in action in the capital.
Netanyahu spoke to the bereaved families as “my sisters and
brothers,” drawing on his own experience of losing his brother,
Yonatan Netanyahu, in the Entebbe rescue mission in 1976.
Nava Cohen, who lost her brother in the Yom Kippur War and her son in
Hebron during the Second Intifada, spoke on behalf of the bereaved
families. “We are always looking for more parts of our son,” she
said. “We’re always trying to gather another sentence, another
memory, another photograph, so that we can continue to live with our
son.” Cohen said the hardest part was following the chain of
photographs – from childhood through school and bike trips and
finally to the soldier in uniform – until the photos stop abruptly.
“Today, Remembrance Day, is a day when all of Israel is united in the
remembrance of these soldiers,” she said. “Every story, from every
soldier, is a story of his life and also a story of the nation of
Israel.” She also pleaded with the Defense Ministry not to combine
the branch that supports bereaved families with other government
ministries where it could be overlooked.
Other ceremonies will take place across Israel as the country
memorializes those lost in wars and terror attacks with sirens at 8
pm on Tuesday night and 11 am on Wednesday. The Prime Minister will
speak at both the official ceremony for the fallen in Israel’s Wars
on Wednesday morning as well as the state ceremony for the Victims of
Terrorism in Israel and Abroad. (© 1995-2011, The Jerusalem Post
Return to Top
MATERIAL REPRODUCED FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY