Almog Meir Jan, 21, was last seen in a video taken by Hamas at 12:30 p.m. on Saturday, October 7, 2023, following the Supernova desert rave that was targeted by Hamas terrorists who slaughtered at least 260 revelers and took an unknown number hostage.
“You see five young kids, some of them tied up, all of them scared, and you see Almog clearly,” said his uncle, Aviram Meir.
The army also identified Almog in the video and on October 12, formally confirmed to the Meir family that Almog is a captive in the Gaza Strip.
The family knew Almog was heading to the party, said Meir.
He had spent Friday night with his grandparents, helping his grandmother shower his grandfather, following back surgery that the 87-year-old had undergone two weeks earlier.
Almog and his family, as well as his grandparents, all live in Or Yehuda.
“He’s a fun-loving guy, he takes life lightly,” said Aviram. “He was mischievous as a kid.”
Almog was released from his army service three months ago and had intended to begin tech work at Ness Israel last Sunday.
At 7:45 a.m. on Saturday, Almog’s mother, Orit Meir, received a phone call from Almog.
“He told her, ‘They’re shooting, they’re shooting,'” said Meir. “He couldn’t figure out what was going on.”
Almog told his mother he would update her, told her he loved her and said goodbye.
What the family has found out since is that he got into the car of a friend, but after the two tried to leave, they were shot at and didn’t get very far. They know that much because the friend, who is also missing, was able to call his parents and report that much to them.
The two ran from the car, and that’s what the families knew, until they saw the internet video from Hamas of Almog, in Gaza.
“We’re trying to process it,” said Meir. “My sister is in her house, surrounded by friends all the time, telling his story, showing his pictures to the world.”
The Meirs are in touch with other families who have missing family members, are working with the government and are in regular contact with Simcha Goldin, father of Hadar Goldin, the soldier killed during the 2014 Gaza War whose body was taken by Hamas fighters and never returned.
“We’re really working at this,” said Meir.