In the video above Yehuda Hayisraeli, the most seriously injured soldier from the Protective Edge Operation in Gaza sings together with Education Minister Naftali Bennett.
When the Protective Edge campaign broke out on Israel’s Gaza border in 2014, Yehuda Yitzhak HaYisraeli was enrolled in an elite officer’s training course. Exempted from the fighting, he nevertheless begged his commanders to be allowed to serve his country on the front line.
After completing the training course, his request was granted, and Yehuda Yitzhak joined his comrades fighting in southern Gaza as part of Operation Protective Edge.
As they entered the city of Rafiah, he enjoined his troops to leave behind their fears and other concerns, to concentrate solely on the coming battle. “Now we forget our home and family – and we are for the Nation of Israel.” This was especially true for Yehuda Yitzhak himself, as he was leaving behind a pregnant wife and young daughter.
Tragically, however, during the fight in Rafiah, he was critically wounded, suffering a near-fatal wound to the head. Shrapnel penetrated his skull, entering his brain, leaving him unconscious for an extended period and rendering him unable to speak.
His second child, a son, was born while he lay unconscious in Soroka Hospital and the baby's brit milah was held there, with his bed moved to be near it, although he did not respond. His father teaches at Morasha Religious Zionist elementary school in Kiryat Moshe, Jerusalem, and the night prior to the brit, his entire class came to the hospital by bus to say the Shema prayer at the infant's crib and pray for Yehuda Yitzhak's recovery.
After a series of eight operations, Yehuda Yitzhak made a remarkable recovery, regaining consciousness and the ability to communicate. But still, he remained unable to talk. During a recent family celebration in Har Bracha, however, Yehuda Yitzhak demonstrated his improving condition, smiling for photographs with relatives, and even speaking.
When the Defense Ministry refused to fund a specially designed additions to Hayisraeli 's home for his handicapped condition, because he lives in Samaria, his family opened a fundraising campaign and raised 1.4 million NIS to enable him to come home last year.
In the video above HaYisraeli sings together with Education Minister Naftali Bennett.