Those We Have Lost

Odaya and Dolev Swissa, 33 & 34: Murdered in front of their daughters

Family tried to leave Sderot as sirens sounded, were attacked by Hamas terrorists and killed in their car on October 7

Odaya and Dolev Swisa (Facebook)
Odaya and Dolev Swisa (Facebook)

Odaya and Dolev Swisa were murdered in front of their two young daughters by Hamas terrorists on October 7 in Sderot.

Odaya’s mother said that when the air raid sirens began ringing in Sderot early Saturday, the family got in their car and tried to leave the city, but were attacked by terrorists as they tried to escape.

Amer Odeh Abu Sabila, a Bedouin construction worker, was in Sderot early Saturday morning and heard Odaya screaming after Dolev had been killed. He got into the driver’s seat to try and bring Odaya and the two young girls to safety at the Sderot police station, without knowing that it had been taken over by terrorists.

Both Abu Sabila and Odaya were murdered. Romi, 6, and Lia, 3, were lying on the floor of the car and were unscathed. Harrowing video footage from that day shows the two young girls screaming for help as police officers arrived. “Are you police?” the young voice of Romi can be heard from inside the car. “Are you from Israel? Take us!”

Officers managed to bring the girls to safety in a nearby stranger’s house, where they hid in the safe room until their grandparents could be tracked down.

Odaya and Dolev’s family told Ynet that the couple met in Eilat during their military service in the Navy, and got married in 2015.

“They were a wonderful couple and full of joy for life, they would all dance together as a family every day,” their family added.

“Dolev, my dear son, who will I handle the longing and the sadness?” wrote his mother Eliana on Facebook. “How? Watch over us from above the way you did down here, and send me strength every day please.”

Zohar Blum, the deputy mayor of Rehovot, said Dolev is his wife’s nephew, and the family is heartbroken over the immense loss.

“A young couple whose lives were cut short during a war just because of their geographical closeness to the Gaza Strip, and the unbelievable ease with which terrorists infiltrated their home,” wrote Blum. “An incredible couple who left two young and pure girls behind, orphaned.”

Limor Moses described Odaya as “always smiling, always happy, so beloved, light-hearted, beautiful and funny… just incredible at everything! An angel on Earth. My heart is shattered.”

Read more Those We Have Lost stories here.

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