At a family event I heard that my second cousin died recently. We were not in touch, he was quite a few years older than me. I remember the time when my parents took me to visit his family in the kibbutz. I was still a child, and he was already a good looking young man with a kind smile.
Like many other Kibbutizniks (people from a kibbutz) back then, he was, what we called, "the salt of the earth." So naturally when he enlisted in the Israeli army, he gave his best to his country by becoming an officer.
Then came October 1973 and the Yom Kippur War. My cousin fought in the Golan Heights as a commanding officer. For his "courage, presence of mind, resourcefulness and leadership," he received the highest Israeli military decoration. But later I heard that when he came back from the war, he was never the same.
Keep reading in