Daily Israel Report

8-Year-Old Toulouse Victim 'Brought Happiness', Says Her Brother

Brother of 8-year-old who was murdered in the attack in Toulouse says his sister “brought happiness to everyone around her.”
By Elad Benari
First Publish: 3/21/2012, 2:15 AM

Miriam Monsonego
Miriam Monsonego
Israel news photo: Flash 90

Avishai Monsonego, brother of eight-year-old Miriam Monsonego who was murdered in the shooting attack in the Jewish school in Toulouse said on Tuesday his sister had “brought much happiness to everyone around her.”

Speaking to Channel 10 News while holding back tears, Monsonego, who lives in Jerusalem, said, “The last time I talked to her was on the phone. She wanted to ask what I'll name my daughter.”

He added, “Sometimes people think that it happened because we were sent to France, but I think that more people are killed in terrorist attacks in Israel than abroad. That's not the reason it happened. That’s what G-d decided and that’s what had to be.”

“The feeling I am getting now is similar to what many Jews have felt over 2,000 years,” said Avishai Monsonego. “The feeling of grief, of losing a family member. I know that Mom and Dad were waiting for her a long time. She was the last child in the family.”

Eyewitnesses on Tuesday said that the killer of the four Jews in Toulouse got off his motor bike to grab Miriam and shoot her in the head.

Miriam was the last of his victims after the murderer, described as in his 30s, killed Rabbi Yonatan Sandler and his two sons, Aryeh and Gavriel, outside the Otzar HaTorah Jewish school Monday morning.  He then reportedly got off his bike without removing his helmet and went through the school gate. Children fled, but Miriam was not able to get away from his clutches. First, the killer critically wounded a 17-year-old student and then grabbed Miriam, put a gun to her head and shot her. He then returned calmly to his motor bike and sped off.

The bodies of all four victims were transported to Israel for burial on Tuesday. The Otzar HaTorah Jewish school, meanwhile, will reopen on Wednesday, two days after the murders.