Yaakov Nitzan
Yaakov NitzanYosef Mizrahi / Arutz Sheva

Yaakov Nitzan, father of Gilad Nehemiya who was killed in the battle in Gaza, spoke to Israel National News - Arutz Sheva at the Binyamin Council's Independence Day event at the ancient Shiloh site.

"These are tough days that combine sadness and joy, memories and independence, this is something that accompanies us most of the time. On Memorial Day for the Fallen Soldiers of the Wars of Israel (Yom Hazikaron), when so many people came up to talk to us at the cemetery, I said that those two minutes of the siren are 120 seconds. We have 120 seconds to understand what a person can do in his or her 120 years. I think that as we are celebrating 76 years of the State of Israel, each person should tell themselves how much the country has achieved in its years of existence. When we stand here in ancient Shiloh, in Judea and Samaria, with a lot of strength and pride, the personal pain gets a feeling of something much bigger and this gives us strength to go on,” explains Nitzan.

Nitzan continued to say, "We have a rite of passage between pain and happiness. I compare Memorial Day to the beginning of an operation, like the scalpel coming down on the heart and cutting it. Then when the flag is raised to the top of the mast, it feels like the end of the operation. If all our pain is part of the redemption, it is a therapy for the heart, mind and soul. The proximity of Memorial Day to Independence Day gives us unbelievable strength."

Nitzan tells that his son Gilad, "Asked to be buried in Shiloh. He left us a recorded will and asked to be buried in the land he grew up on and was connected to. He was a simple person, connected to everything that is not fake, everything that is clean and natural and constitutes the values ​​we all talk about. All of this was his way of life."