Col. Shai Siman Tov will bear the IDF torch during the ceremony for Israel’s 71st Independence Day. Chief of Staff Kochavi gave his recommendation of Colonel Siman Tov to the Public Committee for the Selection of the Torchbearers, and the recommendation was approved by Minister Miri Regev.
Regev offered congratulations over the worthy choice. "Col. Shai Siman Tov symbolizes the determination of the spirit and the strength of the soul to overcome the pains of the body. The recovery process from his serious injury during Operation Protective Edge and his return to serve as commander in the IDF is a story of the heroism of the spirit and the power of the will to overcome any obstacle. I am proud of you and salute you. "
Minister Regev agreed with Chief of Staff Kochavi that the wife of Colonel Siman Tov will accompany him during the ceremony.
The committee noted that Col. Shai Siman Tov was seriously injured by the collapse of a tunnel beam during Operation Protective Edge, when he commanded the Barak Battalion of the Golani Brigade. Col. Shai Siman Tov attended the military boarding school in Haifa and joined the Barak Battalion in the Golani Brigade in 1996. During the Second Lebanon War he fought as a division commander in the Egoz unit and during Operation Cast Lead he fought as deputy commander of the Gidon Battalion in the Golani Brigade. After completing a long rehabilitation process, he returned to service in October 2015 and is now serving as a team commander at the Tactical Command College.
Col. Siman Tov said, "I am grateful for the privilege of lighting a torch as the IDF representative and am excited about the event. I appreciate and value the opportunity given me by my commanders to continue to command in the Israel Defense Forces."