Two Israelis die in accidents in Seattle, Georgia

Bassel Abu Shariki, a resident of the Negev, was seven months away from completing his medical degree.

 Bassel Abu Shariki (photo credit: COURTESY OF THE FAMILY)
Bassel Abu Shariki
(photo credit: COURTESY OF THE FAMILY)

An Israeli student died in a gas leak in their apartment in Georgia on Sunday and an Israeli man living in Seattle died in a car crash on Saturday, local Israeli consulates announced on Sunday.

Bassel Abu Shariki killed in gas leak in Georgia

Bassel Abu Shariki, 24, a fifth-year medical student studying in Tbilisi, Georgia, died due to a gas leak in his room. Two other students living with him were injured lightly as well.

All three students are from the Lakia in the Negev. "Just last week he was in Israel on vacation, he shook my hand and said hello. He remembered to ask how the children were doing," said Shariki's uncle, Muhammad Abu Shariki, to Walla.

"It's a terrible tragedy, it's already very cold there at this time of the year and the heating is done with gas and apparently there was a malfunction and that's how he died."

 The Space Needle is seen on the skyline of tech hub Seattle, Washington, US February 11, 2017. (credit: CHRIS HELGREN/REUTERS) The Space Needle is seen on the skyline of tech hub Seattle, Washington, US February 11, 2017. (credit: CHRIS HELGREN/REUTERS)

Shariki added that his nephew had tried to study in Israel but didn't manage to get the necessary psychometric scores. He instead went to study in Ukraine but moved to Georgia after the war in Ukraine broke out.

The Israeli student only had seven months left until he completed his degree.

"It hurts a lot," added Shariki to Walla. "He was a handsome guy, tall, lively, full of joie de vivre, always smiling like in the pictures and he loved life. He loved to help everyone. The most important thing in his studies was that he was diligent and performed every task in the best possible way. He loved his parents, kept in touch."

Guy Levy killed in car crash in Seattle

Guy Levy, 39, originally from Dimona, was killed in a car crash in Seattle on Saturday.

"This is a disaster for the family and a disaster for the entire city. As soon as I heard the bad news, I ran to the family's house," Dimona Mayor Benny Biton told Walla. ""His parents Yigal and Flory are my childhood friends. It is a severe shock to all of us. I knew this boy from the moment he was born. He grew and blossomed here in the city. Salt of the land. His mother is a municipal worker."

Biton added that he is working with the Foreign Ministry to get Levy's body transferred back to Israel.

"Like many Israelis, he sought his fortune overseas, in America," said the mayor. "He was there for 13 years. He worked in air conditioning. In the process, he became a citizen. He made a living. But he always kept in touch with his family. They spent holidays together. My heart aches."