IAF pilots Lt.-Col. (res.) Noam Ron and Maj. (res.) Erez Flekser were buried on Wednesday, the day after their Cobra helicopter crashed outside Kibbutz Revadim, east of Ashdod.

During the ceremony for Ron at the Ramat Hasharon military cemetery, Ron’s brother Yoni read a letter that Noam had written years earlier and kept locked at his base, in the event he would die.

“If you are reading these words, it probably means something happened to me.

I always hoped that if I would die – at least it would be for an important purpose, while carrying out the duties that I love, and this is probably what happened. Try to do all that you can to return the happiness to your lives.”

The note left by Ron, whose younger brother Ayal died in a hiking accident 16 years earlier, also read: “I’m going to meet Ayal. For you this will be a second blow, and I sympathize with you.”

Ron’s daughter Nofer said, “Daddy, I’m writing but I can’t actually believe this.

You were the best father I could have asked for, a role model to be proud of. There is no one who knows me that hasn’t heard of you. You are part of every day of my life, and it’s impossible to picture a moment without you.”

Hours before Ron’s funeral, his co-pilot, Flekser, a 31- year-old father of a fourmonth- old, was buried at the military cemetery in Herzliya.

Army Radio quoted a pilot named “M,” who was Flekser’s guide during flight school, who said of Flekser: “Erez was an introverted man who succeeded at everything. Maybe because he was introverted, we didn’t always notice him... In the squadron, when they say “he was a special man, I don’t know what this refers to if not to Erez.”

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