From the Mother of Critically-Injured Soldier, Nathaniel Felber

From the Mother of Critically-Injured Soldier, Nathaniel Felber

3 weeks ago, IDF soldier Nathaniel Felber of Maryland and Raanana was critically injured by a Palestinian terrorist while protecting Israelis waiting at a bus stop.

When Nathaniel was about to join the IDF, his mother, Judi, wrote the following article: My Son, The Soldier. This devoted mother’s moving words remind me of the self-sacrifice, not only of our brave IDF soldiers, but also of their parents.

While Nathaniel’s condition has improved somewhat, his life remains in immediate danger. Please pray for a complete, immediate and miraculous recovery for Natanel Ilan ben Shayna Tsiporah.

MY SON, THE SOLDIER by Judi Felber

If we still lived in America, my son would be “flying off” to college this month – his next step in life. I would be helping to get him ready for this transition. We would be shopping for new bedding, new clothing, new school supplies, and maybe even the latest laptop to do his work.

He might be nervous about leaving the comforts of home and living in a dorm room with people he has never met and who may be quite different from himself. He might be concerned about whether he will make friends or if his courses will be interesting.

Well, we live in Israel, so instead my son is “flying off” to do his civic duty and join the Israeli Defense Forces – his next step in life, as an Israeli. We don’t need to go shopping. The army will provide bedding. They will give him two sets of uniforms, the only clothing he will be permitted to wear for the next 2 years and 8 months when he isn’t home. He will be issued all of his supplies, which will include a gun.

He is nervous about leaving the comforts of home and living in a room with people he has never met and who may be quite different from himself. He is concerned about whether he will make friends and how he will do in basic training. However, the concern becomes deeper as it is not just a concern for if he will make lasting memories but the concern for his own safety.

He knows he has to do this. I know he has to do this, but still, it’s emotional and I want to protect him.

I grew up in America and did the American thing – graduated high school, went to college, got a job. I don’t really understand the stresses of military life and culture, putting my life on the line. I don’t know what it feels like to be faced with life and death situations. I also don’t know the pride of knowing that I am protecting my country and my people, wherever they may live (the oath that all Israeli soldiers take says something like: I promise to protect the State of Israel and Jews throughout the world, wherever they may be living).

It’s scary to let my little fledgling fly away to the great unknown, with dangers I can’t understand. But, I am also so proud that my son will grow into a man with a purpose bigger than himself, with values of altruism and sacrifice for one’s people.

Although I will be so proud when he comes home wearing his new uniform, the mom in me will always have a knot in the pit of my gut until I see him.

May the Felber family and the entire Jewish people soon celebrate Nathaniel’s return home, healthy and whole, please G-d!

7 comments

  1. Devorah Calic

    We are praying for your precious son. We made Aliyah 8 years ago and live in Haifa. I can only imagine the anguish and concern you have for Nathaniel — we have not had to face this as our children are still in America. It my heart feels pain knowing you are going through this. I pray for Hashem’s mercy and a miracle of Refuah shlemah for him. He is a blessing for all of us, being willing to give his life so others can live.

  2. Sybil Nassau

    ANITA’S FRIEND FROM MORE THAN 40 YEARS AGO, AND BEEN TERRIBLY CONCERNED. PRAYERS FOR HIS FULL RECOVERY AND MY HEART GOES OUT TO HIS MOM. IT IS OUR WORST NIGHTMARE….

  3. We are davening for your precious and brave son. Keep tight to your emunah in Hashem!!

  4. Hoping to hear good news every day. We talk about Nathaniel in our home and have forged a bond with him. Praying for his full recovery where you can enjoy his beautiful smile once again.
    Btw, do you have his mom’s email address?

  5. In light of a more recent update, please consider passing along this first person account from a neuroscientist who documents her own post-stroke (not TBI) recovery as she journeys to a brain unlike her former one. http://www.mystrokeofinsight.com/

  6. The Skolnicks

    My Wife and I were shocked to find out about this tragedy. Approximately 28 Years ago we were friendly with The Felbers, who attended the same Shul as us in Maryland.
    We will daven for Nathaniel’s refuah shlema. Our hopes and prayers are with the Felbers.

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