Captain Ziv Shilon, who was badly wounded in a Hamas attack near Gaza in October 2012 and lost his arm, vowed on Sunday that he would do everything in his power to return to the IDF as a fighter.
Shilon, who attended a Memorial Day event in Jerusalem, said, “I will do everything to return to serve the country; to my brothers who died while on duty I promise to be on guard. Today all of Israel sheds a tear for your son, dear mother; the charming, mischievous child who just yesterday you took to kindergarten for the first time. The child for whom you prayed would return home safely when you accompanied him to the recruitment center.”
"Father, this is the child that you taught how to ride a bike, this is the child who accompanied you to the synagogue every Shabbat. That dear son of yours did not come home. Instead, the city officer came and gave you that news that painted your entire life in black. You were left with only the memories, with only the photo albums and we were left with a hole in the heart,” said Shilon.
He then turned to the bereaved families and said that during the most difficult moments, when he thought that his life would be oever, all he wanted was just to live. "I'm sure your loved ones would have given anything to be with us today as well," said Shilon.
"I stand here with you and I salute you for the unending dedication,” he said. "I assure you that I will make sure they did not fall in vain. I promise you to make sure that we are on guard at all times and ensure the existence of the State. Therefore, at this very emotionally charged moment I promise to do everything I can in order to come back to serve. I will go back to protect you and do everything to protect our wonderful country. With deep gratitude for the opportunity to raise my children in the Holy Land.”
After losing an arm and suffering significant injury to his other arm in the initial attack, Shilon charged the terrorists who had attacked him, using his mouth and nose to help operate the gun.