Fogel family funerals to be held in J’lem today

Father Udi, 36, mother Ruth, 35, and children Yoav, 11, Elad, four and Hadas three months were stabbed to death in their home.

March 13, 2011 01:55
2 minute read.
Itamar settlement in the West Bank

Itamar 311. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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The names of the five victims of Friday night’s terrorist attack in the Itamar settlement were released on Saturday. They were all members of the Fogel family: father Udi, 36, mother Ruth, 35, and children Yoav, 11, Elad, four, and Hadas, three months.

All five were stabbed to death inside their home.

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The remaining three children, Tamar, 12, Ro’i, eight, and Shai, two, are staying with their grandparents in the Neveh Tzuf (Halamish) settlement, north of Modi’in.

The five victims will be laid to rest at the Har Hamenuchot cemetery in Jerusalem on Sunday at 1:30 p.m.

The grandfather, Haim Fogel, said on Saturday evening, “We heard the bitter news of the terrorist attack at 3 a.m., from the Neveh Tzuf emergency rescue team, led by Rabbi Yonatan Blass. They took us to Udi’s house in Itamar and we saw the terrible murder scene.

We then went back home with the three children who were left alive.”

Fogel said that the last time he spoke to Udi was on Friday before Shabbat began, and recounted spending the previous Shabbat with Udi and Ruth and their children in Itamar to celebrate the new Hebrew month.

Yitzhak Shadmi, a spokesman for Neveh Tzuf, told reporters on Saturday evening: “Udi was a teacher and a man of Torah. He was a wise man who could have been a scientist, but preferred to be a teacher in the State of Israel.”

Leah Goldsmith, a 25-year resident of Itamar, said the community was dealing with a great deal of turmoil and pain following the tragedy.

“This is a test, a test for all of us. It seems that all the cards are stacked against us, but we know that through all the years and with everything that has happened, we’ve only become stronger.”

Goldsmith said the attack was affecting Itamar residents differently, based on how long they’ve been in the community, which since it was founded in 1984 has had 20 members killed by terrorists.

“There are two types of people living here: the old-timers who have been here for a long time and have been through these things before, and the younger couples who have moved here recently.

For us, it’s a feeling of déjà vu, while for the younger couples they’re worrying about what their parents will think.

“It’s a very strong yishuv [community]; on the other hand, we wouldn’t be normal if there wasn’t some sort of turmoil after something like this.”

Shaul Goldstein, head of the Gush Etzion Regional Council, said on Saturday that “these are the real results of the Arab incitement campaign against us and this is the ugly face of our enemy.

“The only suitable response is for the prime minister to apply Israeli law across all of the territory of Judea and Samaria, in order to say loud and clear to the world: We have returned home and no force on earth can remove us from here,” he said.

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