Thousands of people attended the funeral of fallen IDF soldier Nissim Sean Carmeli, who was laid to rest in Haifa on Monday night.
Carmeli is one of the 13 combat soldiers who were killed in Gaza on Sunday.
Carmeli was a lone soldier from South Padre Island, Texas, whose parents are still in Texas and who had no other family in Israel other than his two sisters.
As a result of his situation, officials of the Maccabi Haifa soccer team called on its fans to attend Carmeli’s funeral “so that his funeral will not be empty.”
In the call to fans, the soccer club said that “Carmeli was a lone soldier, and we don't want his funeral to be empty. Come to his funeral Monday night to pay respects to a man who died so that we could live. This is the least we can do for him and for our nation,” the message said.
Israeli media estimated that anywhere from 12,000 to as many as 20,000 people had heeded Maccabi Haifa’s call and attended the funeral.