Head of Central Command Roni Numa has decided to award a citation to IDF soldier A. for neutralizing the terrorist who infiltrated the community of Neve Tzuf (Halamish) in Samaria and murdered three members of the Salomon family.
In addition, a certificate of appreciation will be given to the soldier’s father, Shimon Maoz, for civilian heroism.
The combat soldier will be awarded for "showing of composure, engaging the enemy and dedication to task in neutralizing the terrorist, while showing courage and judgment that led to the prevention of a heavier disaster." A certificate of appreciation for his father will be given for "displays of courage, engaging the enemy and exemplary citizenship in participating in the neutralization of the terrorist and the prevention of a heavier disaster."
First Sergeant A. serves in the IDF's Oketz Unit, which is the IDF's canine special forces unit.
A., who is 22, was home on leave when he heard screams coming from his neighbor's home on Friday night. Taking his gun from the safe, A. ran outside, climbed over the neighbors' wall, and shot the terrorist in the stomach - right through the window. The terrorist fell through the floor, and the Salomons' daughter-in-law and her five children were spared.
The attack was not the first time A. was involved in a security incident in his hometown of Neve Tzuf. Three years ago, a terrorist entered A.'s home and attacked his sister. At the time, A. chased the terrorists out and alerted the security forces.
In his subsequent account of the incident, A. said, "While my family ate the Friday night meal, we heard screams from the direction of our neighbor's home. My father and I went out to see what was happening... I ran back home to get my weapon."
"I stood outside the house and saw the terrorist through the window. I knew that I couldn't lose my cool, I had to be professional and controlled....It seems I was at the right place at the right time.
"I try to focus on the fact that what I did prevented what could have been a worse tragedy. But this is not the first time we have experienced something like this."