Israel Resource Review
01 August '11
[Rebecca's story represents countless forgotten stories in Israel. According to an on the record intelligence briefing which was held only two weeks before this attack, the IDF prevents anywhere from eleven to fifteen of these kind of attacks every day - preventing 98% of potential attacks - simply because our soldiers patrol in every nook and cranny of every Arab community west of the Jordan River. Imagine a situation of a PLO state where the IDF would not have that freedom of action.
On a more personal note, my wife Sara worked for seven years for the Koby Mandel Foundation, meeting the forgotten family members of those whose loved ones have been murdered by Israel's peace partners.- David Bedein]
Dear friends and facebook friends of friends!
I am asking you to take a moment - read my story - and consider sponsoring Pia Levine as she participates in the NY Triathlon to raise funds to the One Family Fund and their continued support for victims of terror and their families.
A little over four months ago I became a victim of terror.
There are many clubs in life - and until you are part of the club, there is really no way to fully understand how you would feel after an experience. When I was growing up I heard about terrorism, read about terrorism, felt sad when there was a terror attack in Israel - it was not until I survived a terror attack that I finally understood.
On March 23rd I left work half an hour late. Paused outside my building to stare at some people taking photographs. And missed my light and the 74 bus.
A minute later I hopped onto the 75 bus and sat in the back. At the next stop my student, Pia Levine (read her story: https://www.teamonefamily.org/pialevine ) got onto the bus with her friend Sara and sat in the row infront of me.
It was Pia's last week in Israel and the end of her Shana Bet (2nd) year in seminary. We chatted about what she should take in her carry-on luggage.
Across town, a terrorist placed a bomb in the crowded bus stop of Binyanei Hauma - the Jerusalem convention center and a major bus stop.
As we raced toward Binyanei Hauma - I debated about getting off the bus like I usually do, or walking back to school with Pia.
I was still debating as the bus rolled to a stop - BOOM - the bomb exploded.
There is a moment. Not even seconds. Its like someone moves the camera as they take a picture. The world is a blur in my memory.
THEN. I knew in my gut that there had been a pegua (terror attack). The window IMPLODED into the bus. Women were screaming. THE BUS WAS STILL MOVING. I turn. Pia and Sara are on the floor. I run to them. They are praying. I yell "YOU ARE OK". I yell to the bus driver "OPEN THE DOORS! OPEN THE DOORS!" I grab their hands and run through the bus.
We run. And run. We called our parents on the way to tell them we were ok. As we run ambulances drove towards the scene. We just kept running - our arms around each other until we got back home.
The bomb tore through the bus stop, through the front of the 74 bus and the back of the 75 bus. It killed one woman and injured 23 people.
Thankfully Pia and Sara were not physically injured in the pegua. I was in shock and did not know I was injured until the following morning.
The fact I was injured made it easier for friends and family to ask how I was. But, the physical injury barely registered - I am extremely lucky to have my vision, I got shrapnel in my eye and my cornea got infected - and still it was so low on my list of horrific outcomes of the day. In many ways the trauma was more traumatic than the pegua itself.
I did not sleep for a month and a half. I could not be alone for two weeks without crying. I still feel a huge amount of tension in my shoulders. And do not get me started on thunder, lightening, fireworks, a car door slamming, or any other unexpected (or expected) noises - it is a jolt to the system. Apparently this is all completely normal - and I've had a "textbook" response and recovery.
BUT TERRORISM DID NOT STOP MY LIFE. I was on a bus the next morning at 8:30am. I was at work the next morning by 9:00am. I walked through the bus-stop the next afternoon. I continued working, having fun with friends, and doing all the other important parts of my every day life. And I continue to make aliyah plans and will hopefully be landing in Israel at the end of the summer!!
Pia - Pia, continues to amaze me. She participated in the Jerusalem marathon that Friday and returned home as originally planned. Pia will be participating in the NY Triathlon on August 7th to raise money for the One Family Fund - an organization that provides ongoing support for victims of terror and their families.
I am asking you to take a moment. Look at https://www.teamonefamily.org/pialevine and sponsor her. And then, share our stories with your friends and family.
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