Youngest Victim was 16-Year Old Volunteer
Elad Riven convinced his mother to take him to his unit. Senior police commander Col. Lior Boker also among dead.
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 12/4/2010, 8:20 PM / Last Update: 12/4/2010, 8:14 PM
The body of Elad Riven, 16, a volunteer fireman, was identified Friday evening at the Abu Kabir pathology institute. Elad was killed during rescue operations at Beit Oren.
Elad was an only child. He studied at the prestigious 'Re'ali' (Science-oriented) High School in Haifa. His classmates said that when Elad saw flames and smoke billowing during school, he quickly called his mother and asked her to bring his uniform and take him to join his unit at the site of the fire. He got dressed in the car, on the way to the fire.
"Elad was a hero who ran toward the fire instead of running away from it and saving his life," his mother said on IDF Radio. A close friend of his, Bar Ashkenazi said: "He was an amazing guy, a kid with a heart of gold. He always helped people. He heard about the fire and was on his way immediately."
"His mother tried to convince him not to go, but it was pointless. He decided he would go and that was it. At first she blamed herself but later on she realized that he could not have been stopped. He would have found a way to get there. It is hard to imagine that Elad is not coming back."
The body of Lt.-Col. Lior Boker, Head of Operations branch of the Police's Northern District, was also identified by pathologists in Abu Kabir.
The Commander of the Northern District, Major General Shimon Koren, went to Lt.-Col. Koren's home Friday and informed his family of the tragedy.
Boker was 57. He drove behind the bus that was consumed by fire and his car was also caught in the flames.
Lt.-Col. Ahuva Tomer, Commander of the Police's Haifa Station, is still in critical condition in Rambam Hospital. She is in the Intensive Care Unit suffering from severe burns.