Shai Scenic Lookout 758.
(photo credit: KKL-JNF)
The new scenic lookout commemorating Shai Dayan was dedicated at a moving ceremony on Thursday, January 29, 2015, in the Miluim (army reserves) Forest in Nahal Habesor, located in the Western Negev. The ceremony was attended by relatives and friends of Shai Dayan, and representatives from KKL-JNF and the Eshkol Regional Council
“This place, Shai, is yours. Here, on the highest hill facing the panoramas and plains that are all dressed up
today in your honor, visitors will get a different perspective, your perspective. Shai, how does it feel to be the highest and the most prominent, while deep in your heart you are simple, modest and natural?” Said Iftah Magen at the ceremony, who had been a close friend of Shai, and who had helped the Dayan family locate the site in Nahal Habesor where they would commemorate their son.
The Shai Scenic Lookout is only 90 meters above sea level and only a few meters above the western bank of the Besor ravine, but despite these unpromising conditions, the modest observation point has a view that spans from Gaza to Beersheba, including the wheat fields of Kibbutz Nirim, the hills of the Judean Lowland and the hills of Hebron. From the lookout, one may also view the raptors that frequent the creek.
The unique, panoramic sign installed at the site, with illustrations by Shalom Geveler, describes the view in detail. A special bench has also been installed, from which the entire landscape can be seen.
Boaz Kretschmer from the Eshkol Regional Council, the man who connected the Dayan family with KKL-JNF, thanked the family and KKL-JNF, and complimented the KKL-JNF landscape architect, Zohar Tzafon. “I must admit that every time I argued with him and wanted to add something, he always ended up being right. This scenic lookout is noteworthy for its beauty, its simplicity and its harmony with the location and with nature.”
The Dayan family, modest like their son, chose to have only a few words about Shai written on the sign, “A son of Moshav Dekel, who loved this stream.”
Shai Dayan, who was especially tall (2.03 m/6.8 ft), died suddenly nine years ago from cardiac arrest while playing basketball, which he liked so much, with his team, Hapoel Nitzanim. He was only twenty-eight. Shortly before his death, he graduated from Sapir College, where he had studied computer science and information systems, and began working for the Motorola Company. He was survived by Shira, his wife of only one and a half years, by his parents, Yochi and Udi Dayan, and by his siblings, Edut, Roi and Eli.
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