An elderly couple was killed Friday in a car crash near Gan Yavne as they drove to the wedding of close family friends.
Sam and Mira Weisel, both 81, were killed when their car struck a truck stopped on the side of the highway just outside the central town.
According to Israel Radio, police are not sure why the Weisels’ vehicle veered into the shoulder of Route 4.
Paramedics said Mira died instantly and declared her dead at the scene. Sam was rushed to the hospital with severe abdominal injuries but died shortly after.
Friends and family learned of the tragedy during the wedding.
The bride’s mother told the radio station her family felt guilty for allowing them to make the 2-hour drive to Tel Aviv from their home in Kibbutz Nirim to attend the wedding.
“We weren’t vigilant enough in finding them a ride to the wedding,” Dalia Keller told the radio station on Sunday morning.
“We do feel some guilt over this, but we also feel pride that we could call them our friends,” she said.
Keller said the Weisels probably should not have been driving at their age.
The Weisels immigrated to Israel in 1958 from Melbourne, Australia, together with the Hashomer Hatzair youth movement. The couple settled in Kibbutz Nirim in the northern Negev. Sam worked in construction on local kibbutzes and Mira worked as an educational coordinator for the community.
The couple will be buried Monday afternoon at Kibbutz Nirim. They are survived by their three children and several grandchildren.