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Yossi – The School Principal

Yossi Hershkovitz was a special kind of dad.

He was a funny dad, who would often make cell phone videos that made you smile!

He was the kind of dad who liked to get dressed up in fancy costumes on Purim.

He was the kind of dad who left his cellphone making cat-like meow sounds outside of the family’s Sukkah last year, but the kids wouldn’t stop looking for the cat they thought was hiding in the Sukkah.

Yossi was the kind of father who sat with his kids to talk about life, but also lived life to the fullest. If he heard that someone was sick in the hospital, he would take his violin and go and play music to help the person regain his strength.

Yossi was a school principal who cared about each and every one of his students.

For example, if he found a student outside of class in the middle of the day, he would carry him back to class on his back. He was the kind of school principal who wanted every child to know how special he was, and to that end he introduced an app to the school and called it 'A Good Point'. Through this app, teachers sent messages to parents when their child did a good job in class or did something nice for a friend.

Early in the war, Yossi was called up to the army. He served in a special unit of exceptional people, people who were ready and willing to leave everything behind to go and protect their country and their people. Literally, every single soldier left his home and was ready to do whatever was necessary.

From Gaza he sent his wife and each of his children a letter. He also sent a video to his students and asked them to only say nice things about the people of Israel who do so much for their fellow Jews in times of war.

On Friday, just before Shabbat, Yossi bravely fought against terrorists. A bomb exploded at the entrance to a nearby tunnel, hitting him and his two best friends.

Thousands of people attended Yossi's funeral. They sang many songs. His children told stories about him, and the violin that was played there reminded everyone that Yossi’s special song, the song of a school principal, a father, and a soldier, will never be silenced.

And if late at night, when everything is dark, you look toward the sky – you’ll be able to see a shining light, or perhaps even many shining lights, that will remind you about all the goodness and light in the world. In Yossi’s words: "You just have to look and search for it”.


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