Yechiel Leiter, the father of Major (res.) Moshe Yedidya Leiter, one of the 52 IDF soldiers who have fallen in battle with the Hamas terrorist organization over the last month, spoke to Israel National News - Arutz Sheva about his son's life and heroism.

"What can I tell you about Moshe, I don't know where to begin. We'd need many hours of broadcast," Yechiel stated. "He was our firstborn. He was the first child to be born in Hevron Ha'atica, the old city of Hebron. He spent 15 years in one of Israel's most elite military units and special forces, the equivalent of America's Delta Force. And then he went to med school when he was 33."

He described the richness of his son's life. "He served in the reserves 80-90 days a year. He ran a program to integrate haredi young men into our intelligence and cyber units in the army. He was full of chesed, he was full of life. We're learning all sorts of new things we didn't even know. We didn't even know he wrote poetry, but someone came and said 'I put music to one of the poems that he wrote' and wanted us to hear it."

"Moshe basically led the division, because he was a tremendous expert in understanding the intricacies of the battlefield," he said.

"He was my hero, he was everybody's hero, and he made my life richer," Leiter said of Moshe. "I have to take it from here and to try to integrate into my life and into my other seven children's lives the example that he set for them, and really the example that he set for me."

"We always used to pride ourselves on who we are the son of, and I'm very proud of my ancestry, but I now categorize myself as being the father of: I'm the father of Moshe Leiter. He's my son and my hero."

Leitner said that there is some comfort in knowing that his son fell in defense of the lives of Israel's citizens. "There's no greater Mitzvah, there's no greater commandment, there's no greater thing a Jew can do than to fight and defend the Jewish people. And he knew what he was doing. He knew what he was fighting for. He always used to say that he has a lot of weight on his back, but it's lighter because he puts his grandfathers and grandmothers on his shoulders. They make it lighter for him, because he knows he's fighting for generations of Jews who couldn't fight."

Leitner spoke over the phone with Prime Minister Netanyahu after he received word that Moshe had fallen in battle. The Prime Minister assured the bereaved father that there would be no question when the ongoing war is concluded that Hamas will have been destroyed.

"He used the term, 'I promise,'" Leitner said. "I'm confident he will."

He called on the government to resist international pressure to end the war against Hamas prematurely. "If we didn't respond the way we did now, without destroying Hamas entirely, we would have had the picture of Be'eri and Sderot etched into our national hearts. This is a moment of rebuilding, restructuring, resurrecting the State of Israel and the safety of the Jewish people around the world. We're gonna do this, we're gonna do what's right, and we're gonna do it because Moshe showed us the way. Whenever we're together, whenever we're united, we know how to deal with the international pressure. It won't influence us," he said.