From Rabbi Billet of Woodmere, Long Island: Tonight I had the unique privilege to attend a very special wedding. For my small part in the story I knew that it was special. But tonight I met the real heroes of the story.
What makes it so special is that it is a story of the Jewish people. An uplifting story of the Jewish people. Tonight I met the ambulance driver who defied the blockade near the Yeshiva where the attack took place. He was told that it was too dangerous to go in to the area because there might be more terrorists. But he knew that every second could mean the life of another person. And in Naftali’s case he was absolutely right ! It saved Naftali’s life. That same ambulance driver made a spur of the moment decision not to go the distance to Hadassah hospital but rather to take a shorter route to Shaarei Tzedek Hospital. That decision saved Naftali’s life.
At the wedding is the current MAGAD of Gedud Shimshon in the Kfir Brigade who ran into the Yeshiva w/o fear for his own life and killed the terrorist. He enabled first aid to get to Naftali in time to keep him alive.
Then there is the doctor from Kazakhstan who had made Aliya. His wife heard a lot of ambulances, turned on the news, learned of the terrorist attack, and called her husband. He was not on duty that night. But he ran to the hospital, arrived just when Naftali arrived, spared him wasted time on triage her, and took him directly into the OR. He stayed with him all night, did surgery, and infused him with tens of pints of blood. He saved his life.
When Naftali was well enough to travel, he had many problems. His urethra was severed, his bowel was severed, and his stomach was severely damaged. Rav Binyamin Fisher of Magen LaCholeh found the one doctor in the world who created an operation which repairs peoples’ inner organs with tissue from their own body. He recommended that Naftali go to the University of Indianapolis medical center and have the surgery.
There was only one problem: the cost of the entire medical procedure was a quarter of $1 million. Now here comes the Jewish people. The Five Towns, Brooklyn, West Hempstead, Los Angeles, One Family, and many individuals from all over the United States contributed. The funds were raised, the surgery was done, and it was a success.
Naftali healed, return to his studies, grew up into a handsome and fine young man and Torah scholar. He got married tonight at a very emotional and very happy wedding that I had the privilege to attend.
ומי כעמך ישראל