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Residents of Gaza Border Community Return Home with ‘Heavy but Beating Hearts’

March 1, 2024

by: Ilana Curiel and Matan Tzuri ~ Ynetnews

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Israeli flags adorned the convoy of returning Shlomit residents (illustrative).

Friday, 1 March 2024 | More than four months after their small community was evacuated due to Hamas’s murderous onslaught on southern Israel, residents of Shlomit returned home on Thursday, their convoy adorned with Israeli flags stretching as far as the eye could see.

Four Shlomit residents fell in the battles on October 7: Bechor Swid, Oriel Bibi, Aviad Cohen and Reouven Chicheportiche.

Swid and Bibi fell at the Magen Junction, while Cohen and Chicheportiche were killed at Moshav Pri Gan, where they helped avert a massacre. The battle at Pri Gan was crucial in preventing further harm to the community and surrounding settlements at risk of terrorist attacks. Additionally, four other Shlomit residents were wounded in the fighting.

“Today, we return to Shlomit as a unified and cohesive community,” said Kobi Revivo, a resident of Shlomit. “We left as one, and we return as one, minus four remarkable people who left us a path that we must fulfill—to continue to grow, blossom and add life. Let the people of Israel know that we, the residents of Shlomit, are coming back to the place we love, drawing strength from it to continue settling.”

Resident Shiran Harush said: “After four months away from home, we are returning with heavy but beating hearts with many fears and, yet, great excitement. Our community and our hearts have a gaping hole over the loss of our friends who were killed on October 7 while defending the neighboring community of Pri Gan. We know the war is far from over. We pray for the return of the hostages and the safety of our soldiers! But it was important for us to return to remember what we are actually fighting for. Here, we are engaged in rebuilding and revival.”

Posted on March 1, 2024

Source: (This article was originally published by Ynetnews on February 29, 2024. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

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Photo License: Wikimedia