Rehovot: 'We Can't Digest This Tragedy'

A neighbor of the Shaer family who lost six members in a fatal fire: We're having a hard time digesting this terrible tragedy.

Elad Benari,

Firefighting truck (archive)
Firefighting truck (archive)
Israel news photo: Flash 90

Residents of the Najara neighborhood in Rehovot were shocked and devastated on Tuesday over the deaths of six members of the Shaer family in a fatal fire on Monday night.

38-year-old Guy Shaer and his five children - Eliav, 11, Evyatar, 8, Amitai, 7, Shira, 3, and one-year-old Itamar – were killed in the fire that broke out in their home. They left behind Avivit, the wife and mother, who just last week lost her brother to cancer.

“It’s hard to digest,” Moshe Tam, head of the Najara neighborhood council, told Arutz Sheva. “The Najara neighborhood isn’t digesting the tragedy. All the residents of the neighborhood are in shock. All of Rehovot, the entire country I think, have been hit by this. I still don’t understand what happened here. Let’s hope we can overcome this.”

Tam said he knows the Shaer family well, since the Najara neighborhood is a small one in which everyone knows everyone and residents support one another.

“I grew up in this neighborhood,” he said. “I grew up with this family. A very modest family, a very quiet family. A family who loves to help. We never heard anything bad about them. Just a week and a half ago, in the same place where the fire broke out, they were sitting shiva for the mother’s brother who passed away from a fatal disease at the age of 49. We haven’t even finished eulogizing him and today we’re going to bury six more.”

“The grandfather and grandmother on the mother’s side are having a very hard time accepting this,” said Tam. “These young children grew up in this house with their grandparents. They were with them 24 hours. To think that they won’t be with them anymore…I hope they are able to handle it.”

Tam promised that the neighborhood’s residents will help the widow and bereaved mother, Avivit.

“She lost everything. She’s been left with nothing. No children, no husband. We’ll help her,” he said. “The people in this neighborhood have lived together for 60 years. In cases like this people know how to help.”