08 Nov Mourning their Beloved Kibbutz Be’eri
Mourning their Beloved Kibbutz Be’eri
The Kidron family survived the Hamas terrorists’ assault on their Kibbutz, Be’eri, but as one of the hardest-hit communities, with many killed, injured and kidnapped, and numerous homes destroyed, they are left wondering what will happen to them and their beloved kibbutz.
On October 7, Annette and Boaz Kidron, who lived in Be’eri, hid in their safe room for 19 hours while Hamas terrorists roamed the kibbutz shooting in every direction. They sat in that protected space, feeling powerless as they heard gunfire and shouting, and worried about what had happened to their children, who lived elsewhere on the kibbutz.
“Our Be’eri was a paradise for children, paradise for adults, and on that Saturday, our paradise was transformed to hell,” said Annette Kidron, emotionally. For 19 hours, mostly without electricity, water, or contact with the security forces, they waited for it to be safe to emerge. All the while, the kibbutz’s WhatsApp group was flooded with messages as residents begged for help from terrorists breaking into their homes, and murdering, injuring and kidnapping them.
By the afternoon of October 7, Annette and Boaz had no battery left on their phones. Their other children lived in houses elsewhere on the kibbutz, and so their fear and uncertainty only intensified.
“Our son, Segev, and his girlfriend lived in the furthest building from us. Agam, our 18-year-old daughter who was recruited into the IDF a few months ago, recently moved out and was alone in her safe room. We were unimaginably worried about all of them,” Annette said.
At one point, Annette and Boaz shared, a terrorist fortified himself on the second floor of the house and began shooting in every direction for hours.
“We kept waiting for the army to arrive, waiting to hear the security services show up. Hours passed like that. Only around 17:00 did we begin to hear the voices of soldiers, until we were rescued at two in the morning,” Boaz explained. “We were in shock from the scale of the atrocity, and we still didn’t know a bit of what had happened – things we weren’t aware of at all when we were locked in the safe room.”
Segev lived on the other side of the kibbutz. When the attack began, he was already awake and on his way to ride his bike, as he liked to do every Shabbat.
“I was waiting for our bike shop to open at seven in the morning so I could buy gel that my bike needed. If not for that, I would have been out riding before then and would probably have come face to face with the terrorists at the kibbutz entrance,” Segev recounted.
When the red alert sirens sounded, Segev and his girlfriend immediately entered their safe room with another neighbor who hadn’t managed to close the safe room in his home and was forced to escape under fire to Segev’s house. As they waited for rescue, they worried about Segev’s parents, whom they had lost contact with.
Now, the family is currently staying at a hotel next to the Dead Sea but are beginning to think about what comes next.
“At the moment we don’t have anywhere to return to. We have no idea what will happen to our beloved and wonderful Kibbutz Be’eri, which has experienced an awful tragedy. Who will return to Be’eri? How will we rehabilitate our incredible kibbutz?” Boaz questioned.
Despite the terrible trauma the family experienced, they are trying to remain optimistic.
“We know with certainty that what we have is our community. That’s what keeps us going. Without that, there wouldn’t be any future at all. And of course, the Jewish people, who are proving the strength of the country again and showing what it means to be Israeli. This is what gives us hope,” Segev said.
“We are so thankful to The Jewish Agency and the many Jews worldwide who have helped us in countless ways, with financial and emotional support, therapy, and spiritual support. Everyone who has helped us has shown the greatness of the Jewish people,” Boaz added.
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