Shalom Life | July 01, 2014

Naftali Frenkel’s Mother: We Will Learn to Sing Without You

Families of Eyal Yifrach, Gil-Ad Shaer and Naftali Frenkel decide to bury the the boys together after consulting with their rabbis and the police

By: Shahar Chai, Itay Blumental, Ahiya Raved

Published: July 1st, 2014 in News » Israel

Gil-Ad Shaer, Naftali Frenkel and Eyal Yifrach were to be laid to rest side by side in Modi’in cemetery on Tuesday evening, a day after the bodies of the three teens were found in the West Bank and 19 days after they vanished while hitchihiking near Hebron.

A visibly emotional Rachel Frenkel, Naftali’s mother, said in her eulogy to her son: “Rest in peace, my child. We will learn to sing without you. We will always hear your voice in our hearts.”

Even among the sorrow of the mourners, she recalled that Naftali had brought joy to the lives of his loved ones.

She thanked the soldiers who worked day and night to find the boys, “you promised you would find them and bring them home, and you did.”

“We’re crying, but these are tears of strength and love,” Uri Yifrach, Eyal’s father eulogized his son.

Eyal Yifrach’s memorial service in Elad (Photo: Ido Erez)

He also had strong words to his son’s murderers: “You are wrongdoers, the nation of Israel promises that your day will come. We will not break.”

“We are humanitarians, we have love and it will triumph,” he continued. “We will not break. We will not give up. We’re here, and you can’t change that. We’re a strong nation.”

“Eyal, you are a saint,” his father continued. “You had a special kind of love for any man … What else do you need? You told me many times, ‘if someone asks me for something, I can’t refuse.’

“Your siblings want you near them, for you to come and give them a big hug. For you to hug mom. Mom said that you are now right by God’s side. She asked you to whisper to God, ask Him to give her strength, to give all of us strength. It’ll be hard without you. We need strength.”

Eyal’s grandfather (right) at the synagogue in Elad (Photo: Ido Erez)

Eyal’s grandfather also eulogized his grandson: “I’m convinced Eyal fought his kidnappers with all of his might, to show them that we are not afraid, because he had a hero’s soul: A hero in his love to the land of Israel, a hero in his love to the people of Israel. And he definitely did not go like sheep to the slaughter. I’m convinced he gave them everything he could to prove that we’re in our land, our home land, and we’re certain in the righteousness of our path, that the land of Israel is ours.”

Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon spoke at Eyal Yifrach’s memorial service: “Three mothers and three fathers are burying their son today. The sadness and grief that has surrounded you since you received the bitter news, has surrounded the entire country as well.

“You, who raised your sons and made them who they are, will not carry their memory everywhere you go. In the 18 days that have passed since the kidnapping, we learned, every day that passed by, more and more about their personalities, their hobbies, the little things that show that they were teenagers in the beginning of the journey of life that was cut short.

Eyal Yifrach's memorial service in Elad (Photo: EPA)
Eyal Yifrach’s memorial service in Elad (Photo: EPA)

“Eyal, Gil-Ad and Naftali were kidnapped and murdered by wrongdoers, just because they were Jews. They were abducted and murdered in cold blood by those whose mission is to hurt the citizens of Israel and fight a daily war of attrition. They can’t defeat us,” Ya’alon added.

The defense minister also vowed: “We will not rest until we lay a hand on the kidnappers, and bring them to justice.”

Speaking of his son Gil-Ad’s call to the police, Ofir Shaer said: “From the moment I heard your brave whisper, I heard a great voice and I stood taller. What resourcefulness, bravery and strength of someone not yet 17.

Bat Galim and Ofir Shaer, Gil-Ad’s parents, at his memorial service (Photo: Motti Kimchi)

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