As Israel looks ahead to Yom HaZikaron (Memorial Day) on Monday, April 24th to mourn those lost in the Israeli Defense Force and terror attacks, there have been many new names added to those lost since the beginning of 2023. Even more disturbing, since the turn of the year, three different sets of siblings have been murdered in terror attacks in Israel.
On February 10, brothers Yaakov Yisrael Paley, 6, and Asher Menachem Paley, 8, were killed in a car-ramming attack carried out by a Palestinian terrorist at the entrance to the Ramot neighborhood of Jerusalem.
Just two weeks later, on February 26, Hillel Menachem Yaniv, 22, and Yagel Ya’acov Yaniv, 20, were killed as they drove through the Palestinian town of Huwara. At the beginning of April, two British-Israeli sisters – Maia and Rina Dee – were killed when the car they were traveling in crashed after being attacked by Palestinian gunmen, before they were shot at point-blank range. Their mother, Lucy (Leah Dee) succumbed to her wounds a few days later.
As he laid his wife to rest, just days after burying his two daughters, Rabbi Leo Dee said, “our family of seven is now a family of four.”
Rabbi Dee has since said he has been overwhelmed by the reaction of his community and people worldwide in supporting him and his family following his wife’s and daughters’ murder.
For American-born David Rubin, the attack that killed the Dees and the Yaniv brothers bore a striking resemblance to the attack that almost took his life and the life of his son over twenty years ago.
In 2001 Rubin was the mayor of Shiloh, and as he was driving home one evening from Jerusalem with his three-year-old son, his car was ambushed by three Palestinian terrorists. He was wounded in the leg and his son was shot in the head, but the bullet missed his brain stem by millimeters and he survived the attack.
“Thank God, my son is physically okay now,” Rubin says. “But he is still dealing with the experience emotionally to this day.”
Transformed by the experience, Rubin wanted to build something positive after the event. In 2004, he established the Shiloh Israel Children’s Fund in order to help children living in the biblical heartland to recover from trauma. The organization supports vital therapeutic, educational, and recreational programs.
“We saw so many people coping with the after effects,” he added. “But children in Judea and Samaria have suffered disproportionately from terrorism.”
Children are not the only ones suffering. For family members who go through the trauma of a terror attack or losing a loved one, the experience can be harrowing to deal with and everybody has different coping mechanisms. Parents can suffer differently from surviving siblings, leading to tensions or even familial breakdown.
For this reason Shiloh Israel Children’s Fund has launched a new Whole Family Therapy Program to help entire Israeli families recover from terrorist attacks through a specially tailored initiative. Through different methods such as counseling or art, animal, and music therapy, the Whole Family Therapy Program can help families regain their lives together and function in an environment that best suits them. To overcome tragedy, children need their parents, and parents need their children, and, with your help, SICF is showing them how to overcome the pain, together .
Donate now to provide Whole Family Therapy to families traumatized by terror attacks in Judea and Samaria.