Those we have lost

Sgt. First Class Yonnatan Savitsky, 21: Fended off Hamas to retake IDF post

Killed in fierce Kissufim battle on October 7; helped saved lives of some 50 soldiers and civilians

Sgt. First Class Yonnatan Savitsky (IDF)
Sgt. First Class Yonnatan Savitsky (IDF)

Sgt. First Class Yonnatan Savitsky, a fighter in the elite Egoz commando unit, was killed battling terrorists at the Kissufim army post on October 7. He was due to be discharged from the army in five months.

Savitsky and his team had been sent south to the border with Gaza to help retake an army post that had been overrun by Hamas terrorists. During a seven-hour gun battle, he helped save 50 people: 32 female unarmed soldiers from the border observation unit, three citizens, including one of the commanding officer’s wife with their baby, and 14 soldiers from the Golani unit, many of them injured, who were at the base.

His commanding officer said Savitsky fought bravely. “He was a true professional and was willing to take on any mission with a smile,” he said, adding that is why he twice received honorable mentions and made him his front marksman.

Savitsky, from Modiin, is survived by his parents, Bella and Gershon, and older sister Lina.

In a eulogy, his family said: “Jonathan will forever be missed. His smile and laughter filled the room. He was so strong and handsome and the politest person around. He made friends easily and was always humble.”

“He was well-loved by everyone and people from all parts of his life came to pay respect, telling us how much his presence was like a beacon of light,” they added. “Even strangers who met him training at the gym told us how much they were envious of his strength and kindness.”

His girlfriend of four years, Adi Harel, also mourned Savitsky: “I knew you were the best when I met you. Every mother would pray for her daughter to have a partner like you. You were perfect. In these moments of sadness, only you would know the words to comfort me.”

Read more Those We Have Lost stories here.

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