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Sgt. Adi Baruch, 23: Boyfriend proposed to her at her funeral

todayOctober 28, 2023 1

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When the funeral crowd left the grave of Adi Baruch, 23, her boyfriend approached it holding a white ring box.

Kneeling on the freshly dug red earth of the cemetery of the town of Barkan in Samaria on October 15, Nevo Yanai produced an engagement ring and proposed to Baruch, a wedding photographer who was killed three days earlier by a rocket that Palestinian terrorists had launched into Sderot.

Yanai had bought the ring weeks earlier and had been waiting for the right moment to propose to his high school sweetheart, a former operations sergeant who was serving as a reservist in Sderot. Baruch insisted that her unit commanders draft her following the October 7 onslaught on Israel by Hamas terrorists.

“I just needed to hear myself propose to her,” Yanai told Channel 13 after the funeral. “I looked at her, at her grave, I told her about our life together and how from a very young age, she stole my heart,” he said.

Baruch’s story has resonated with countless Israelis who have been exposed to it because it underscores both the patriotic devotion triggered by the attack and the price it has exacted on Israeli society, which has lost hundreds of young, promising and inspiring people like Baruch.

Among the terrorists’ first victims were hundreds of young adults who attended a music festival near the border with Gaza when the incursion occurred. The terrorists hunted them down, perpetrating atrocities, as they progressed toward kibbutzim, villages and cities near Gaza. Some 2,000 terrorists participated in the incursion, in which they killed some 1,400 victims, most of them civilians. About 220 people have been abducted to Gaza and are kept there as hostages.

The incursion prompted a massive military operation. More than 6,000 Palestinians have died in Israel Defense Forces strikes against Hamas targets. Dozens of Hezbollah terrorists have died in exchanges of fire with Israeli troops in the north. Several Israelis died in those exchanges.

On Wednesday, 27 Chabad rabbis from the United States who are visiting Israel on a solidarity mission met with Baruch’s parents, Orit and Avraham, in Kiryat Netafim, a religious town near Barkan.

“We saw immediately where Adi of blessed memory got her qualities,” said Ruvi New, a Chabad rabbi of Boca Raton, Florida, referencing Adi Baruch’s parents. “Our mission here is to uplift spirits but we found ourselves being uplifted ourselves by Orit and Avraham, their faith and fortitude,” New, a 56-year-old father of 10, told The Times of Israel.

David Eliezrie, another Chabad rabbi from California, said that Adi Baruch’s story “represents the unity in the People of Israel at this time.”

Orit Baruch told the visiting rabbis about her daughter. Yanai, her grieving would-be fiancé, wanted to leave the ring with Adi’s parents, Orit told the rabbis. But she asked him to keep it, “recover emotionally and find another woman to start a family with,” New said, quoting the bereaved mother.

Adi Baruch sent her mother a picture of herself smiling while wearing her uniform as she headed down to Sderot. She was satisfied that her lobbying with her unit resulted in a draft order conscripting her.

Avi, her father, who was also drafted, had proposed she sit out the fighting. She replied: “You did not raise me to sit it out here,” the parents recalled while meeting with the rabbis.

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Written by: Soft FM Radio Staff

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