top of page

Survivor stories

Read Next

The terrorists were at our doorstep. I sat there with my son, petrified

  • Ninel K.'s story

There was a policeman who was bleeding. He didn't know what to say except to urge us to run away

Three days have passed and I'm still trying to recover and find the words to talk about the ordeal we went through and everything we faced. I'm finally pulling myself together thanks to family and friends who have been listening and supporting me. I'm here to tell my story.

I will have to recount the numerous miracles that unfolded along the way, the ones I didn't fully grasp until I got home and everything started to sink in.


Ninel K.


Ninel K. sitting from the right

During the party I made many new friends, including the late Dudi and Dor RIP, who lived in a moshav nearby. They told me that they bribed one of the guards with 200 NIS in cash and that's how they got into the party. While we were walking together towards the square, I decided to take a rest and go to Niv’s and his friends’ kanta [tented resting area]


“At that point the loud booms started. I raised my eyes and saw a grey trail above us.”


At that point the loud booms started. I raised my eyes and saw a grey trail above us.

The security guards and the police asked us to evacuate quickly and seek shelter.

It took us a few seconds to grasp that there were rockets above us, and that we should rush and make our way home, or look for a shelter in the area or in a village close by. We got into the car only to find ourselves gridlocked in traffic within the party parking lot, with no phone reception.


People are standing next to cars and above smoke marks in the sky

At 6:58 Dudi had sent me a voice message saying that everything was fine, that they were used to this [rockets] and there was nothing to panic about. He mentioned that he had already left for the moshav without me because I did not respond (there was no reception). He invited us to his moshav for shelter. They planned to carry on, sitting and drinking together, as if nothing happened. He was among the first to leave the party.


“An IDF officer shouted at us to get out of the cars and run in the opposite direction of the party”


After navigating through all the traffic jams in the parking lot, we finally made our way onto the road and took a right turn towards our home. We started driving and suddenly Asif heard gunshots. He made a u-turn to the other side, where for some reason we did not understand, a huge traffic jam had formed.


People are driving cars near the field

An IDF officer in uniform shouted at us to get out of the cars and run in the opposite direction of the party, towards the farms and the wadi. And so we did. We ran into the unknown hoping that soon there would be a ceasefire, so that we could get back in the car and make our way home.


We ran and ran, surrounded by a crowd of people and packed cars. There was a policeman among us who was bleeding. He didn't know what to say except to urge us to run away. We ran until we reached the wadi, we went downhill, and tried to contact the police from there but there was no answer. We also tried to contact the military base but they had no way to help us either.


People walking on the hills of the fields

We started to hear the gunshots getting closer to us. Once more we were running into the unknown. Someone helped me back uphill and pushed me from behind. I was reciting "Shema Israel" [Jewish prayer said in moments of great anxiety] out loud. At that point we had already split and I started running on my own while the shots were only getting closer and closer! The phone reception came back and I was able to listen to Dudi’s voice message. I thought to myself that if I had joined them I would have probably already been in a safer place, in a tranquil shelter, instead of running from bush to bush without knowing where I was heading.


"Niv and I quickly got inside and we drove out aimlessly in the field, while stopping occasionally to try and open the trunk in order to save more people."


The phone reception came back and I managed to also catch Niv on the phone. I asked him to keep running straight, until he saw a hill. He climbed it and then I could see him. He was wearing a purple shirt, so I could easily recognize him even from a distance. I guided him towards me. We ran towards the plantations. One of the security guards of the event saw us and advised against entering, urging us to keep running.


Miraculously, Liron and Alma came across a passing car with three girls from Rishon LeTzion in it. They were in the midst of intense panic attacks, screaming and saying that they would not stop the car for a second. Niv and I quickly got inside and we drove out aimlessly in the field, while stopping occasionally to try and open the trunk in order to save more people. We did not succeed because, again, the car did not belong to any of us.



While driving in the fields, we came across groups of terrorists so we turned back and drove towards the greenhouses. We thought of stopping at a military base because that should have been the safest place. But in the end we continued our way home. Once we got on the road to Ofakim, policemen approached us pointing their weapons at us. We shouted that we were Israelis who ran away from the party. There were injured people being evacuated at the same intersection. Thank God I got home without physical scars!!!


I thank God for all the miracles that unfolded in my favor!!! For the traffic jams, the lack of reception, for not finding immediate shelter, for managing to keep it cool, and for the optimism and innocence that still remained with me.

And above all, for the angels that saved my life.


And to you, Dudi and Dor, may you rest in peace. I will forever remember you.



Ninel K. smiling at the dance floor at nova festival

Ninel K.


Comentários