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General ‘Grandpa’

The message that appeared on Amir Tivon’s cellphone, a resident of Kibbutz Nahal Oz, as he sat in the “safe room” during a rocket barrage, filled his heart with hope. His 62 year old father, Noam, informed him that he was on his way to the kibbutz.

Noam Tivon was a general in the IDF (Israeli Defense Forces), a senior commander who had already commanded many battles in his life.

This battle, he knew, had to end in victory.

His son Amir, his daughter-in-law, and his toddler granddaughters, were waiting for him, besieged in the ‘safe room’ in their home in Nahal Oz. All around them, the rockets and the sounds of gunfire could be clearly heard. Hamas terrorists arrived at the kibbutz and wanted to enter the house of the Tivon family as well. While grandfather Noam was making his way to them, his tiny granddaughters Carmel and Galia realized that they had to be quiet, lying in their bed, waiting. They were real heroes and managed to keep very still even when it was difficult and scary. Many hours passed. Heavy fears had already crept into the dark ‘safe room’ of the Tivon family in Nahal Oz, but they knew: Grandpa Noam would come.

Grandfather Noam's journey was long as he was saving the lives of so many, even before he reached his granddaughters' house. He collected many fleeing Israelis who were trying to get out of the firing zone and drove them to a place of safety, and then made his way again towards Nahal Oz. Later he added to his brave group other soldiers he met along the way.

At the entrance to Kibbutz Nahal Oz, Grandpa Noam and the combat soldiers who were with him encountered terrorists, in the middle of a battle with other soldiers. They joined the battle, helped destroy the terrorists and evacuated the wounded for medical help. Grandfather Noam did not forget for a moment that this could only end when his family was safe, and so he returned for a third time to Nahal Oz.

When he arrived at the kibbutz, he joined the fighters who had already begun rescuing residents from their besieged homes. They went from house to house, killed terrorists they met on their way, and helped dozens of people leave their “safe rooms”. After ten long hours, there was a knock on the window, followed by the voice of their Grandpa Noam, the superhero, who had finally arrived, after saving so many other people on his way to save his own family.


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