St.-Sgt. Maj. Ehud Efrati, 34, son of an established family from the northern city of Zichron Ya'akov, was "a man of this land," said Osnat, a friend of the family. "He was a loving person who loved to help, a great father to his three children and a fantastic husband to Miri," she added. Efrati, of Beit Yehoshua, was killed Sunday night in an exchange of fire with Palestinian gunmen in the southern Gaza Strip, near the Sufa crossing between Israel and Gaza. Efrati moved to Beit Yehoshua following his marriage to Miri, his wife and the mother of his children, where he was a farmer and worked in the groves, said Eli Beracha, the chairman of the local council of Beit Yehoshua. Hanoch Belzada, Efrati's brother-in-law said, "We paid our duty to the country," adding that Efrati was a farmer who fit in well with their family. "He was a decent and honest man who loved his wife and children, always happy and never too busy for anything." Efrati's parents received the message of their son's death during a trip to Thailand and shortly afterwards they started to make their way back home, to bury their son. Efrati is survived by his wife, three children, parents and a brother and sister.