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Hundreds attend funeral of Omer Tabib, IDF soldier killed by anti-tank missile

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Hundreds of mourners attended the funeral Thursday afternoon of Staff Sgt. Omer Tabib, 21, the military’s first casualty in the current round of fighting between Israel and Gaza.

Tabib, who was killed when an anti-tank guided missile was fired at an Israeli military jeep on the Gaza border Monday, was laid to rest in the military cemetery in his hometown of Elyakim, in northern Israel.

Speaking at the funeral, Tabib’s mother Tali said the family should have been celebrating his discharge from the army, set for just weeks from now, rather than mourning his death.

“I refuse to believe that instead of congratulating you on finishing the army, I am looking for words to sum up your life. In my blackest dreams, I didn’t think this day would come,” she said.

Mourners attend the funeral of Israeli soldier Omer Tabib, 21, in Elyakim in northern Israel, on May 13, 2021. Tabib was killed when Palestinian terrorists in Gaza fired an anti-tank missile near the border. (JACK GUEZ / AFP)

Weeping through her eulogy, she described Omer as “a beautiful, pure child with an eternal smile on his face.”

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“You will forever be my son,” she said.

The funeral was attended by Regional Cooperation Minister Ofir Akunis as well as dozens of Tabib’s friends and comrades.

A member of the Nahal Infantry Brigade’s 931st Battalion currently serving on the northern Gaza border, Tabib’s jeep came under attack Wednesday when parked within Kibuutz Netiv Ha’asara, which lies on a hill overlooking northern Gaza, in an area within direct view of the Strip — and thus vulnerable to attack.

Staff Sgt. Omer Tabib, 21, from the Nahal Infantry Brigade, who was killed when an anti-tank guided missile struck his jeep north of the Gaza Strip on May 12, 2021. (Israel Defense........

© The Times of Israel

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