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I was scared to death. I knew I was going to die

  • Ella S.'s story

I am 14 years old. These are not things a child my age should see

I want to start my story on October 6th, when I invited 12 friends to my house for a barbecue. Everything was amazing. Trusting in my friends' abilities, I tasked them with preparing the meat, unaware they had no idea how to do this. So I reached out to my cousin, Amit, who is really good at this. I asked for his guidance, and he happily walked us through the meat preparation process. Little did I know, as I hung up the phone, that it would be the last conversation we would share before he was tragically abducted.

[My family and I woke up] on October 7th to the horrors of gunshots and people screaming in Arabic. My mother and I, my little brother and his friend who was staying with us overnight, entered the safe room to hide. As we got inside, we received a message that there was a suspicion of terrorist infiltration in the kibbutz. We then heard someone knocking on our front door aggressively. We did not open, we remained quiet, keeping the doors closed so that no one could figure out we were there.

“I got a call from my cousin Nir, who said that terrorists tried to break into their house. They couldn't get in so they burned their safe room”

We have a [WhatsApp] group for all the youth in the kibbutz, a hundred kids between the ages of 13 and 17. They started writing things there like “They broke into my house, they're inside, they're shouting in Arabic, they're shooting at us”. The situation soon deteriorated and kids started writing [more horrific things like]: “they shot my parents, they set fire to the house, we are dying, someone please help us”. We felt helpless, I was in the same situation, we were all in the same boat. I was locked in the safe room with my family and I couldn't do anything to assist my friends who were pleading for help. Amidst this chaos, I got a call from my cousin Nir, who said that terrorists tried to break into their house. [The terrorists] couldn't get in so they burned their safe room.



Ella S. Credit: Instagram


Among all the messages in the youth group, I saw a message from Amit, my beloved cousin. He was at home with his mother and his two younger sisters. He said that there were terrorists inside his house, shooting at the house and doors, that they had already broken in, and that they were afraid for their lives. After that we lost contact with all four of them. At 2 pm, I was told that my grandmother was shot and my grandfather was wounded while they were hiding in their safe room.

“There was blood everywhere, you could see internal organs. Let me repeat this - I am 14 years old. These are not things a child my age, or any child, should see”

We were rescued by a special unit. They took us out and moved us to another house across the street, where we were with three other families. There were seven children aged 3-8, myself, and four other adults. We stayed there while soldiers surrounded the house. [Later we reached the dining hall in the kibbutz]. There was blood everywhere, you could see internal organs. Let me repeat this - I am 14 years old. These are not things a child my age, or any child, should see. I am the eldest sister, my little brother is 8 years old, so I covered his eyes and we continued to walk. Our home, our beautiful home in the kibbutz, our paradise, turned into hell. There was blood everywhere in the streets, I was in shock from the amounts of blood spilled there.


Ella S.


Credit: Mako

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