Two of the three victims killed Thursday morning in a rocket blast in Kiryat Malachi were laid to rest later in the day. Funerals for Mira Sharf, 26, and Aharon Smadga, 49, were held in Jerusalem and Kiryat Malachi, respectively. The third victim, Itzik Amsalem, 24, will be laid to rest Friday at 1:00 p.m. in Kiryat Malachi.
The victims were killed when a rocket fired from the Gaza Strip by Hamas struck a four-story building. An 8-month-old baby was critically injured in the attack, and six people suffered from shock.
The three fatalities were ultra-Orthodox Jews from the Lubavitcher sect.
Sharf was reportedly pregnant. Her husband, Shmuel, was hospitalized for injuries to his head and limbs that he sustained in the attack; his condition is moderate to serious. He was informed of his wife’s death shortly before she was laid to rest. He did not attend the funeral.
Sharf was an emissary for Chabad in India, where she worked with Jewish backpackers. “Such things are rare,” said Joshua Sharf, Mira’s father-in-law, during his eulogy. “Today, when everyone wants luxury, she chose to live in tough conditions in India, and worked 24 hours a day, to bring people closer to Judaism.”
The Sharfs’ 4-year-old son, whose condition was defined as moderate to serious, was also hospitalized for chest trauma and a hand injury. The couple’s daughters, aged 2 years and 8 months, were also hospitalized.
As the funeral for Smadga got underway, attendees had to drop to the ground because rocket-alert sirens wailed.
Smadga died while visiting his neighbor, Amsalem.
“Aharon, you were a righteous man who died sanctifying God’s name,” one of his brothers said at the funeral. “You went to help a neighbor, and you found death. You left behind a 10-month-old baby, and we will take care of him for you.”
Smadga’s neighbors described him as a caring and generous individual who was loved by the community.
Amsalem was described by neighbors as a loving and caring young man who had recently decided to pursue Torah study full-time.
His mother begged him to leave his apartment and head for the reinforced stairwell, as other neighbors were doing, but he wanted to make a video of the Iron Dome system shooting down an incoming rocket, Haaretz reported. The projectile went through his window and killed him.
The Times of Israel covers one of the most complicated, and contentious, parts of the world. Determined to keep readers fully informed and enable them to form and flesh out their own opinions, The Times of Israel has gradually established itself as the leading source of independent and fair-minded journalism on Israel, the region and the Jewish world.
We've achieved this by investing ever-greater resources in our journalism while keeping all of the content on our site free.
Unlike many other news sites, we have not put up a paywall. But we would like to invite readers who can afford to do so, and for whom The Times of Israel has become important, to help support our journalism by joining The Times of Israel Community. Join now and for as little as $6 a month you can both help ensure our ongoing investment in quality journalism, and enjoy special status and benefits as a Times of Israel Community member.