Hours after the bodies of Eyal Yifrah, Gilad Sha'ar and Naftali Frenkel were found, some details are emerging as to how security forces were able to locate the bodies.
Israeli media reported on Monday that the IDF was assisted in the search operation by local guides who know the region well and who offered their help in locating the kidnapped boys.
An optician from the city of Elad, home of Eyal Yifrah, told the hareidi radio station Kol Chai on Monday evening that this past Saturday night, he was contacted by police who presented him with a frame from a pair of eyeglasses, asking him to identify whether the frame belonged to glasses that Yifrah had purchased four months ago.
"I confirmed that it was a frame that we sold at the store,” said the optician, adding, “The following day the police returned again with broken eyeglasses parts, the number matched the number of lenses we had prepared for Eyal.”
According to preliminary assessments the boys were murdered not long after initially being picked up by their killers, and possible only moments after making a call to emergency services - one which tragically was dismissed for hours as a prank.
Security sources believe that the terrorists had likely planned to kidnap only one or two Israelis and keep them alive, but understood it would be extremely difficult to keep three hostages.
The fact that the bodies were disposed of in an open field is a testimony to the fact that the terrorists acted hastily and that something had likely gone wrong in their original plan.
The two terrorist murderers, identified last week by Israel as Hamas members Marwan Kawasmeh (29) and Amar Abu-Eisha (33), are still at large. The IDF continues to search for them.