Those we are missing

Taken captive: Yoram Metzger, broken hip has limited mobility

80-year-old still a hostage in Gaza; wife Tami was released in ceasefire deal November 28

Yoram Metzger was taken hostage by Hamas terrorists on October 7, 2023 from Kibbutz Nir Oz. (Courtesy)
Yoram Metzger was taken hostage by Hamas terrorists on October 7, 2023 from Kibbutz Nir Oz. (Courtesy)

Yoram Metzger, 80, was taken captive with his wife, Tami Metzger, 78, from their Kibbutz Nir Oz home on October 7, as Hamas terrorists waged war in their community, killing and kidnapping one-quarter of the residents.

Tami Metzger was released on November 28 as part of a temporary ceasefire deal brokered by Qatar and the United States between Hamas and Israel.

Their daughter-in-law, Ayala Metzger, has described the couple as old and sick. Yoram has diabetes and after breaking his hip half a year ago, he still has a hard time walking.

The couple — parents of three and grandparents to seven — was in touch with their family, some of whom also live on the kibbutz, on the morning of October 7, said a granddaughter, Ofir Metzger, in a Kan radio interview.

“They’re not always on Whatsapp,” said Ofir, “they’re older.”

They also don’t always like to go into the safe room but promised their kids and grandkids that they were there that morning.

At 8:50 a.m., the elder Metzgers sent their last message, without any further communication.

When the family was later able to enter the house, there were no signs of struggle, said Ofir, aside from evidence that terrorists ransacked their home.

The army eventually notified the family that they were changing Yoram and Tami’s status from missing to captives.

Another grandchild’s family survived the terrorist onslaught that day by holding the door of their safe room closed for more than six hours, while terrorists rampaged through the house.

“We realized later how lucky that was,” said Ofir.

Her family was later evacuated to Eilat, along with the remaining members of Nir Oz.

Yoram worked in the Nirlat factory for decades and more recently in the kibbutz garage. He’s an excellent cook, humorous, a lover of history and a dedicated drinker of the Nir Oz winery’s cellar.

Most Popular
read more: