funeral of Shimon Ma'atuf
funeral of Shimon Ma'atufTPS

Dozens of people attended the funeral of Shimon Ma'atuf, who passed away Wednesday after succumbing to wounds he sustained during the horrific terrorist attack in a park in the haredi city of Elad nine months ago.

Diaspora Affairs Minister Amichai Chikli and Elad Mayor Yisrael Porush joined the family in paying their respects to Ma'atuf.

Minister Chikli said: "The terrorists want the people of Israel to bow their heads after every terrorist attack and I am here to tell them that we will make the terrorists bow their heads. I am proud to represent a government that is determined to fight terrorism. Shimon was not murdered, he fell in battle with terrorists. May his memory be blessed."

Ma'atuf, who was 75, had been employed as a security guard at an event in a park not far away from where the attacks occurred. When he heard screaming, he left his post and headed to where the attack was already underway. He succeeded in firing just one bullet at one of the two terrorists before he was set upon and viciously attacked with an axe. He sustained serious head wounds.

His daughter, Aviva Hillel, told Kan News that her father "was a humble and sensitive person. He didn't stand out, he had his own corner. He worked, went to support the family and it was while doing that he was murdered."

"He was murdered because he was Jewish. These evil terrorists need to be dealt with, only death for terrorists, that is the solution," she said.

She described the night if the attack and her father's condition in an earlier interview with Radio 103FM. "He was unconscious, sedated and on a ventilator after the attack," she said. "Afterward, he was sent to rehab to be weaned off the ventilator, but then he got a lot worse and had to be sedated again.

"It was a complete miracle that he survived as long as he did, every minute of his life since the attack was a miracle," she added. "We knew, of course, that the situation was very serious. He wasn't able to communicate in any way and didn't respond to us either. They told us that he had severe head injuries, brain damage - they also smashed his jawbone with the axe. The doctors treated him immediately following the attack and put his face back together as far as was possible, but brain damage is brain damage."

Asked to recount something of the terrible night of the attack, Aviva said, "I was at home and my mother called me to tell me about the terrorist attack in Elad. I saw something on WhatsApp but I didn't connect it with the fact that my father was at work there at the time. But my mother told me that my father had been wounded so of course I rushed there as fast as I could. I live in Bareket, three minutes away from my mother's home. We didn't go to the scene of the attack - we went straight to Beilinson hospital.

"We didn't leave my father's side for an instant," she continued. "There was always someone there with him. That meant 24/7 when he was in hospital, even though there were visiting hours. There was always someone with him, during the week and on Shabbat too. We didn't leave him alone for a moment."