Danny Hayat: ‘A true survivor’

Hayat, who was seriously hurt in the Carmel fire, took part in int’l disaster relief delegations.

December 5, 2010 03:27
1 minute read.

Distraught relatives crowded a waiting room in the trauma ward of Haifa’s Rambam Hospital on Friday, awaiting news on their loved one still in intensive care since a wildfire broke in the Carmel a day earlier.

By Friday afternoon, four rescue personnel remained in the trauma ward, including a prisons service officer in serious condition, and two firefighters, one seriously and one lightly injured. The fire victims also included Haifa District Police commander Ahuva Tomer, still in critical condition since suffering burns to most of her body, injuries she received as her car became trapped in the flames while escorting a bus that was also pulled into the blaze on Thursday evening.

Though the families were reluctant to talk to the media, one relative, Tali Ben- Yakir, was happy to speak about her older brother Danny Hayat, who was seriously hurt at the scene of a bus fire that claimed the lives of over 40 members of the Israel Prisons Service and Israel Police.

Hayat, 35, a 13-year veteran of the Fire Department, is in his sister’s words “someone who always thought of others first, he was always the first to help. Most of his burns were on the front of his body, and this isn’t a surprise because he is the type to run to a place everyone else would have been running away from.”

Ben-Yakir said her brother served as the head of the Search and Rescue Unit of the Jezreel Valley and had been sent on several occasions as part of Israeli rescue delegations working in disaster scenes abroad.

“He loved his job and was always very proud of it,” Ben-Yakir said.

Though she was concerned about her brother, whose condition had stabilized by Friday, Ben-Yakir said, “he’s a survivor. We’re here mainly to comfort his wife.” Hayat’s wife is currently nine-months-pregnant with the couple’s third child, a girl.

“We’re just hoping that she doesn’t give birth before he wakes up. That she waits a little bit for Danny to wake up so that he can be there when his daughter is born.”

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