Jonathan Davis

Israel’s Memorial Day: Graduates and students of Reichman University who fell in the line of duty

The Monument to the Fallen at Reichman University. (courtesy)

This is a very challenging period of the year in the calendar of the State of Israel. On Passover we remember that we were slaves in the land of Egypt, on Holocaust Remembrance Day, we remember the destruction of the six million Jews who were murdered by the Nazis, and on Memorial Day for the Fallen we remember those whom have given their lives in order for us to live safely and freely in the State of Israel.

On Yom Ha’atzmaut we remember with joy, that fateful day in 1948 when the State of Israel was declared. It is throughout this period where we go from sorrow to joy that we grapple as a nation with all that we have lost and all that we have accomplished.

The story of the Reichman University students and graduates who have fallen over the years during military action and in acts of terrorism is the story of Israeli society, and a painful and integral part of the story of Reichman University.

In the center of the campus, a monument was erected consisting of two stone slabs, on which the names of the fallen are engraved: Major Ronen Peled, Ro’i Avisaf, Lt. Col. Emmanuel (Yehuda) Moreno, Major Amichai Itkis, Major Tzafrir Bar-Or, Lt. Col. Dolev Keidar and Steven Sotloff, may their memories be a blessing.

Major Ronen Peled (1970-1998), studied Business and Law, died while serving his country.

Lt. Col. Emmanuel Moreno (1971-2006), studied Business and Law and fell in action in a highly classified mission in Lebanon. The Emmanuel Moreno prayer room, generously gifted by an anonymous donor, opened in early 2020 and is located in the dormitory building Michael Recanati Tower.

Lt. Col. Amotz Greenberg (1968-2014), studied Business and Law, was an infantry officer killed in action defending the kibbutzim and moshavim from Hamas terrorists.

Lt. Col. Dolev Keidar (1976-2014), studied a BA in Law and an MA in Business and Law. Keidar was an infantry officer that was killed in action defending the kibbutzim and moshavim from Hamas terrorists.

Major Tzafrir Bar-Or (1982-2014), studied Government and was killed in Tzuk Eitan.

Major Amichai Itkis (1982-2010), studied Business and Law and was an F-16 pilot that was killed in a training accident in the Negev.

Lt. Ro’i Avisaf (1976-2004), studied Business and Law, was murdered by terrorists in the Sinai.

Steven Sotloff (1983-2014) studied Government at the Raphael Recanati International School and after graduating worked as a journalist, was captured by ISIS and murdered.

This year after the campus wide ceremony organized by the Student Union of Reichman University, the Raphael Recanati International School students will be able to listen to Reichman University Founding President, Prof. Uriel Reichman speak about his late brother Gadi, who fell in action in the tank Corps on the Golan Heights in 1973. At that time, Prof. Reichman was completing his PhD at the University of Chicago. After hearing of the tragedy, he returned immediately to Israel and joined his paratrooper Unit as company commander.

Reichman University is a university which holds dear Zionist values in the Jewish and Democratic State of Israel. Combat officers are given priority treatment in recruitment to the University, as we admire and respect those who are willing to “lie on the barbed wire” for the security of the State of Israel. Additionally, those who serve in the Reserve are given special benefits. Those extraordinary students and alumni who gave the ultimate sacrifice for Israel’s safety are deeply mourned by us.

Please watch Prof. Uriel Reichman pay tribute to the students and graduates from Reichman University that fell in action.

The embroidered parochet hanging on the Aron Kodeshin the Emmanuel Moreno Prayer Room
The Monument to the Fallen at Reichman University
About the Author
Jonathan Davis is head of the international school at Reichman University (formerly the IDC) and vice president of external relations there. He is also a member of the advisory board of the International Policy Institute for Counter-Terrorism. Mr. Davis also serves as a Lieutenant Colonel (Res) in the IDF Spokesman’s office.
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