Deadly Bus Crash:
'He was killed by a cement block, I never got to say goodbye'

'He was a man of mitzvot.' Daughter of man killed in fatal crash near airport says her father was on his way back from trip to Jerusalem.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Scene of the crash
Scene of the crash
Aviv Hertz/TPS

The daughter of one of victims killed in Sunday evening’s bus crash near Ben Gurion International Airport spoke out Monday morning about her father in an interview with Channel 12.

Iris, the daughter of the 79-year-old man killed when an Egged line 947 bus crashed into a bus stop on Route 40 near Ben Gurion International Airport Sunday night, said her father was on his way back home after spending the day in Jerusalem.

“Dad went on a trip to Jerusalem, and on the way back we didn’t know he was on this bus – and then this happened. He left home as usual – he was 79-year-old but had a young spirit. He was a retiree who loved to visit Jerusalem, a man of nature, not a person of cars and telephones.”

At 7:40 p.m. Sunday, the 947 line bus from Jerusalem to Haifa suddenly strayed from its lane and into a bus stop.

Four people – three women and one man – were killed, with another 14 injured, including the driver.

Iris recalled the moment when she was notified of her father’s death.

“A police officer and a social worker waited for me by my home. And since I’m the oldest [of the children], I was given the responsibility of informing the rest of the family. It was difficult and sad.”

“The last time I spoke with him was Saturday night. I was supposed to meet him today, I needed to come pay a condolence call, and we spoke about it. He asked how the kids were and what is happening with everyone, how are they getting along. He was always asking those things.”

“I didn’t get the chance to say goodbye to him. When people are sick and they are going to die, people can say goodbye to them. A cement block killed my father, and I didn’t get the chance to say goodbye.”

Iris remembered her father as a “righteous man, a man of mitzvoth [commandments] who helped everyone.”

“My mother is broken,” Iris added.

The driver of the bus, Alexander Leibman, a 44-year-old resident of Haifa, was arrested after being questioned by police in connection with the crash.

He is under investigation for negligent driving resulting in death.