Those we have lost

Sgt. Maj. Chen Nahmias, 43: Father of 4 was ‘definition of a hero’

Veteran sniper in elite counterterrorism unit killed fighting terrorists in Sderot on October 7; friends dedicate a dog shelter in his name

Sgt.-Maj. Chen Nahmias (Facebook)
Sgt.-Maj. Chen Nahmias (Facebook)

Sergeant Major Chen Nachmias, 43, a sniper in an elite counterterrorism unit, was killed fighting terrorists in Sderot on October 7.

Born in Ra’anana, Nachmias leaves behind his wife, Tal, and their four young children. He was laid to rest in Even Yehuda on October 12.

Nachmias served his country in various military and security roles over the past 25 years, including the Duvdevan commando unit, the Shin Bet, and for the past few years the Yamam counterterrorism unit, one of four elite counter terror units in the Border Police.

His friends and family remember him as a loving, caring husband and father with a heart of gold, and a passion for animals – especially dogs. So much so that his friends have banded together since his death to set up a shelter for dogs from the south of Israel whose owners were either killed, kidnapped for forced to flee their homes.

“Chen always loved animals… his dream was to study veterinarian science abroad, but he wasn’t able to realize it once he got accepted to Yamam,” Nachmias’s close friend Nati Azoulay told Ynet Live.

They plan to dedicate the shelter to Nachmias’s memory.

“Chen gave his life to this country,” Azoulay said in the interview.

Nachmias was on standby when his unit was called to Sderot early Saturday morning on October 7. At first, he and his unit were unaware of the scope of the Hamas invasion and were focused on an intense gun battle with terrorists in the city. Nachmias battled bravely even after he was shot twice.

“He kept firing. He finished all the bullets in his sniper rifle, moved to the pistol, finished all the bullets there, called in backup. Only afterwards did he collapse,” Azoulay said.

“It comforts me somewhat to know that you died a heroic death, fighting until the last bullet,” his wife Tal eulogized.

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