Olim friends from CA sworn into IDF with family watching via video

The families of both women, Omer Levi and Oria Zisso, had intended on flying in from the US for the induction ceremony until the coronavirus crisis made parents attending the ceremony impossible.

Omer Levi and Oria Zisso are seen at the IDF graduation ceremony. (photo credit: IDF SPOKESPERSON'S UNIT)
Omer Levi and Oria Zisso are seen at the IDF graduation ceremony.
(photo credit: IDF SPOKESPERSON'S UNIT)
Two olim childhood friends from California made aliyah and graduated last week from the same IDF course for training IDF combat-soldiers as their parents watched via Facebook live due to the coronavirus crisis.
The families of both women, Omer Levi and Oria Zisso, had intended on flying in from the US for the induction ceremony until the coronavirus crisis made parents attending the ceremony, let alone international travel, impossible.
However, even in the shadow of this global pandemic, the families and their daughters were able to unite via live video feeds for the ceremony as the IDF tried to facilitate as much family unity as possible given the difficult circumstances.
Levi and Zisso grew up together in California and then jointly decided after high school to make aliyah and join the same course for becoming fitness trainers for IDF combat-soldiers.
They made aliyah in July 2019 and joined the IDF in December 2019, completing their intense three-month course as fitness trainers last week. 
Levi said that the course was, “the most intense and challenging course I ever undertook. I learned a lot about myself, about my unique abilities and responsibility.”
She also noted that her Hebrew had improved a lot and that she bonded with many new friends who can help her start her new life in Israel.
Remarking about the difficulty of her parents being unable to attend, Levi said, “my parents were supposed to come and surprise me, but they could not come in the end because of the [coronavirus] situation. Also, I cannot visit them.”
Yet, “even though my parents could not come. My commanders tried to make the ceremony the best it could be and to look after me as much as possible. I was thrilled also that my parents saw the ceremony via a live feed. They are physically far away, but always in my heart.” 
 Omer Levi chats with her family over Facebook.(Credit: IDF Spokesperson's Unit) Omer Levi chats with her family over Facebook.(Credit: IDF Spokesperson's Unit)
Levi added that it was really special that her parents watched, even if remotely, in real-time as her commander awarded her with her insignia for completing the course.
Likewise, Zisso said, “it was a bit hard for me without my family there since I wanted them with me at that emotional moment.”
Oria Zisso is seen video chatting with her family. (Credit: IDF Spokesperson's Unit)Oria Zisso is seen video chatting with her family. (Credit: IDF Spokesperson's Unit)
In addition to the live video that connected her and her family in the US during the ceremony and the frequent conversations by phone during the course, Zisso also said she pulled through the difficulty with the support of her fellow cadets.
She said she felt, “tremendous satisfaction that I passed for the course.”
Course commander Lt. Shahar Gluzman said that, “to enable families to take part in this emotional ceremony” during a time in which coronavirus regulations would not permit families to be physically present, “we broadcast it on Facebook live with families in Israel and overseas following.”
Gluzman said that the commanders promised their cadets that just as they had been family throughout the difficult and trying course, they would also be family for them at the ceremony.
The lieutenant said the cadets had, “undergone a long journey… full of fitness drills and tests… learning aspects of physiology” relevant to fitness to arrive at the ceremony and that they would “perform their duties at the highest level.”