Shira and Amichai Ish Ran, 6 Months Later (5-Minute Yom HaZikaron Interview)

Shira and Amichai Ish Ran, 6 Months Later (5-Minute Yom HaZikaron Interview)

In honor of Israel’s Memorial Day, for the first time Shira and Amichai Ish Ran reenact the night that would change their lives forever. They talk about the baby they lost, as well as the gift their baby gave them, and to millions of others, during his 3 days alive.

On the eve of Yom HaZikaron, Memorial Day for Israel’s Fallen Soldiers and Victims of Terrorism, we are returning to the couple Amichai and Shira Ish Ran. They were standing at the Ofra Junction six months ago when terrorists shot in their direction. Amichai was moderately injured, and Shira, in her 7th month of pregnancy, was severely injured. Sivan Rahav Meir brings their story, their hopes that their baby would be saved and died 3 days after, and the message they received from one of this year’s most memorable terror attacks. Here they are:

Sivan Rahav Meir (Interviewer): They hadn’t planned that we would ever know about them, and that they would become a symbol. Amichai Ish Ran, after serving in Golani [in the IDF], married Shira Silberstein, a student of education, and they were expecting their first baby. Until the night when everything changed.

Shira Ish Ran: On the 8th Night of Chanukah, we were standing at the bus stop in Ofra, on our way home. We were talking about stupid stuff, children’s songs, and then suddenly I felt something hit me hard and I heard shooting. I got right away that it was a terror attack. My first thought was: there is no way this could happen to me, there are people who terror attacks happen to them, but I’m not one of those people. I’m just a regular person. There’s no way! And my next thought was, I don’t know what to do in a situation like this, nobody prepared me for a situation that I’m standing there and somebody’s shooting at me. I found myself on the ground, I don’t remember if I fell down or lay down. I suppose it was a combination of both. I got that I had been wounded and I got that it was in my stomach. I didn’t think about the consequences, I was scared for the baby, I was pregnant, in my 7th month, in my 31st week.

Sivan: Millions of people around the world were hoping and praying for them and the baby. They agreed to reenact now, for the first time, what happened–as they will do in the Memorial Day Ceremony in their community, Elon Moreh. At the scene of the attack, Amichai, who was also injured, in his leg, began to treat Shira and when they got to Shaarei Tsedek Medical Center she was put into a coma and on life support for two days, until she woke up.

Shira: I asked them how’s Amichai, and they understood right away what I meant, and they said he was OK, he was OK, and he’s in another room, and they would call him and all that. And then I said, “OK, and how’s the baby?” And they said, “Uh, uh, what? What?” Like that…and I was, like, what’s with the baby?” And in the meantime, a different sister ran to bring my mother. “Don’t tell her, don’t tell her what’s happening.”

Amichai Ish Ran: We weren’t allowed to tell her what condition she was in and all that, because getting excited, either way, was dangerous for her. For that reason, in the beginning, I didn’t visit her because she would get very excited and all that, and her pulse would rise right away, and they would have to put her back to sleep again.

Shira: Yes, this is a very romantic part that I don’t remember. They said that when Amichai would come into the room and said even one word, even then my pulse would jump up to 160, or my blood pressure. So they didn’t let him visit me for a while. At one point Amichai came in, and for ever and ever we’ve had an agreement that we don’t lie to each other, no matter what, so I knew I could rely on him, and I said to him, “Amichai, how’s the baby?” And he told me, the situation isn’t good, but the baby is alive and he’s in the NICU and they are taking care of him and he needs a lot of prayers. That’s what he told me. And I said OK.

Sivan: The baby, who was delivered by emergency C-section, survived for three days.

Amichai: On Wednesday, after she woke up, then we saw him together for the last time. It was like he waited for us, so she could come up, and a few hours later he passed away.

Amichai: This whole bag, all of this is things that people wrote [to us.]

Sivan: On the eve of Israel’s Memorial Day, both of them speak about the message, a message conveyed by the youngest terror victim, a baby who hadn’t yet been born.

Amichai: Deep down, truly, we are one people. Underneath all the right, and the left, and the religious, and the secular, it doesn’t matter. I’m not one of those people who say that for unity we need to erase all our differences, actually, because that won’t work. If there’s something that you believe in and makes you different from other people, that’s OK. Unity is supposed to be on top of that.

Shira: Somebody that we don’t even know took a gigantic poster board and walked around the streets and said, “I am going to the Ish Ran family, write a blessing. And they filled it, filled it, filled it up completely–I have no idea who those people are, and they filled up the entire poster board. There were three of four kids from Ashdod, they made a special trip to Jerusalem, they took several buses to get there, just to say, “We are with you!” The Jewish people, we’ve really got it. And we want it. And we are looking for ways to express it. And unfortunately, in general, it’s only at times of tragedy that we know how to express it. But it’s also not fair, that only when there’s a tragedy that we come together.

One comment

  1. Wow! I’d love to see this interview but my phone is blocking it. Can I trouble you to email it to me? Sorry for the hassle

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