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Survivor stories

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I realized that if we stayed there, we would die

  • Yuval H.s story

I remained alone, looking to the sides and seeing people being murdered in front of my eyes

On Friday evening, my friends and I went out to a party, as we usually do.

Free of worries and full of anticipation.

The event started out in regular fashion and in the most fun way possible.

When we arrived, we felt the vibe, saw the people, and felt the happiness in the air. Every single one of us came to enjoy a typical music festival, the incredible energy, and the company of course. Until our life was destroyed.

In moments, we were surrounded by black smoke and a huge amount of chaos from everyone there. We all gathered, completely shocked, and understood that we needed to get out of there as soon as possible.

Rockets Attack On Nova Festival

We got into our vehicles as we heard the rumors that terrorists had infiltrated from the Gaza Strip. All roads were blocked and we couldn’t get away, so we got out of our cars and started to run.

We ran into them in every direction. We ran one way and heard shooting from there. We ran the other way and heard more shooting in our direction.

Imagine a situation in which 3,000 people are running in every possible direction and no one knows where they should be running to.

At one point, I stopped to see what was happening behind us and a second later I saw that Omer, Maya, and Itay were no longer with me.

I started shouting out their names in hopes of finding them and then assumed that they probably continued with other friends.

"I started shouting out their names in hopes of finding them"

At this point, I remained alone, looking to the sides and seeing people being murdered in front of my eyes, rockets falling without fail, and massive shooting all around me.

People were fainting and hiding in the bushes, completely panicked.

Until this moment, I didn’t fully understand the magnitude of our situation.

It isn’t possible to comprehend such a situation.

I understood at that moment that there was nowhere to run to, and the only thing I could do is help those in greater need than me.

I tried calling my friends with the little battery I had left on my phone. Some were able to make it to shelters in nearby towns.

But I couldn’t get a hold of Omer, Maya, and Itay in any way and had lost touch with them since 7:30am that morning.

It’s important for me to mention that at that point, there was no one to turn to, no army, no police, no one.

People run away at the Nova festival

After 8 hours of looking for them without luck and without hearing from them, without even the slightest hint of hope, I understood that if I didn’t find somewhere safe to be I probably wouldn’t make it back alive.

After a few hours, 3 army vehicles arrived at the scene and took me to one of the nearby towns. After a day of uncertainty, we were notified that Omer, Maya and Itay had been kidnapped to Gaza.

My friends and I are shattered but hopeful that they will make it through and will return to us soon, healthy and whole!

Especially during these trying times it’s important that we remain united and not divided.

And remember that we are one people!

We must raise our heads high and give hope and support to our warriors, policemen, and all our security forces.

I share in the grief of all families of the murdered and wish a full recovery to all the victims and the injured.

We’re crossing our fingers and praying for all those who have been abducted to return to us safe and sound.

Let’s hope for better days for all the people of Israel.

United we will win!

Long live the nation of Israel.

Yuval H.

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