Hundreds of residents of Katzrin on Friday attended the funeral for Shumel Rada, who passed away a day after the dedication of a synagogue to his daughter Tair, the 13-year-old girl whose 2006 murder at her school shocked the country.
Shmuel Rada died following a long battle with cancer, and one day before his sixtieth birthday. He was laid to rest close to the grave of his daughter.
At the funeral, his widow Ilana told mourners that her husband was “a king going to join his queen.”
She then turned to those around her and said: “I also don’t want to stay here, take me to them too. My Tair, daddy is coming to protect you.”
“You asked that I pray for you, that you could just manage to see the synagogue built for Tair,” said Ilana’s brother, Shimon Sharon, Channel 2 television reported.
“All of the people of Israel are weeping with us today,” Sharon said. “You said that what was eating away at you was that you, who helped everyone, could not help Tair in her worst moments.”
The chief rabbi of Katzrin also spoke at the afternoon funeral, which was kept short to allow people to return home in time for the start of Shabbat.
The dedication of the synagogue took place three weeks after the Supreme Court ruled that Roman Zadorov, who worked as a janitor at the school, was guilty for the murder of Tair.
Some of the funds to complete its construction were donated by Israelis wanting to help Shmuel to see the building finished before his death.
“It is a good feeling to finally achieve the vision I have had for all these years since the murder, with the completion of this little temple dedicated to the memory of Tair. It is not easy for me being very ill. I made every effort to make it to this occasion,” Shmuel told Channel 2 on Thursday.
Less than 24 hours later, he passed away.