web analytics
February 1, 2015 / 12 Shevat, 5775
 
At a Glance
News & Views
Sponsored Post


Grief In Israel And Texas Over Assaf Ramon Tragedy


Cellular phones began ringing ominously at Congregation Shaar Hashalom in Houston on Sunday afternoon as the bad news quickly spread among a group gathered for a synagogue meeting.


As the meeting drew to a close, Rabbi Stuart Federow decided to announce what many in the crowd already knew: Former congregant Assaf Ramon, the 21-year-old son of Israeli astronaut Ilan Ramon, who perished in the ill-fated Columbia space shuttle, had been killed in a plane crash in Israel.


“It was like reliving six years ago,” Federow said, referring to the day in 2003 when the Columbia disintegrated upon its re-entry into the earth’s atmosphere. “Some people cried.”


An Israeli fighter pilot in training, Assaf Ramon died Sunday when the F-16 he was piloting crashed during a routine training flight in an uninhabited area of the Hebron Hills, south of Jerusalem. The Israel Defense Forces said it launched an investigation to determine the cause of the crash.


At the time of the Columbia disaster, the Ramons were well-known and beloved members of the Jewish community in Houston, where Ilan had been sent to undergo training for the space program.


Federow said the family was admired in the Texas city for its humility despite its “celebrity status,” and that its personal tragedy had touched the community as a whole.


In Israel, news of the tragedy that had struck the Ramon family a second time caused an outpouring of national grief. Thousands, including Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Shimon Peres, attended Assaf Ramon’s funeral on Monday in the northern Israel town of Nahalal, where Assaf was interred beside his father’s grave.

 

 


Israeli President Shimon Peres awarded Assaf Ramon his wings in June.

 

“A nation is shocked and grief stricken,” Peres said. “The whole country is silent and tearful.”


Rona Ramon, Assaf’s mother and Ilan’s widow, delivered an emotional graveside speech.


“I’m angry,” she said. “This was supposed to be my plot. I was supposed to be buried here old and happy with a million grandchildren. I know your father is taking care of you now.”


Rabbi Zvi Konikov, who as the head of Chabad of the Space and Treasure Coasts Community Center near the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral got to know both father and son, said he was shocked by Assaf’s death.


“It’s very hard to gather my thoughts,” Konikov said Monday in a telephone interview from Israel, where he had flown to pay his respects to the Ramons. “It’s a great pity and my heart goes out to the family.”


Konikov said he became acquainted with Assaf when he helped the then-15-year-old, the oldest of Ilan Ramon’s four children, say Kaddish for his father after the Columbia disaster.


Though the Ramons moved back to Israel shortly afterward, Konikov saw Assaf last year when he visited Florida with his family to attend the liftoff of Jewish astronaut Garrett Reisman.


“He was just like his father,” said Konikov, who had met with Ilan Ramon a number of times prior to his fateful mission. “What touched me about them was that they both had a truthful, sincere touch.”


Along with his mother, Assaf is survived by two brothers, Iftach and Tal, and a sister, Noa.

(JTA)

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Grief In Israel And Texas Over Assaf Ramon Tragedy”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
The United States condemned Iran for honoring Hezbollah terrorist Imad Mughniyeh but is not so bothered when Abbas honors PA terrorists.
CIA, Mossad Collaborated on Killing Hezbollah No. 2 Leader in Damascus
Latest News Stories
The United States condemned Iran for honoring Hezbollah terrorist Imad Mughniyeh but is not so bothered when Abbas honors PA terrorists.

The Washington Post reports the CIA and Mossad collaborated on the 2007 murder in Damascus of the Hezbollah terror group’s No. 2 leader.

Kenji Goto Execution

ISIS released a video showing the beheading of Japanese hostage Kenji Goto.

PM Binyamin Netanyahu with Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon at Rambam Medical Center in Haifa.

PM Binyamin Netanyahu says it’s easier to deal with a procedural problem than resolving a nuclear threat.

A firebombed car.

An IDF force killed an Arab terrorist attacking motorists Saturday night near Yitzhar in Samaria.

Egypt bans and names Hamas as terrorist organization, Hamas says Egypt no longer broker between it and Israel

V15′s Bird was marinated in his former boss’s hatred of and blame-only Israel mindset.

Palestinian Authority child soldiers – a crime against humanity.

Maybe, just maybe, the new generation of terrorists will one day turn their guns on their oppressors in Gaza.

The White House explains that Taliban is not a terrorist group — it is an “armed insurgency.”

The US in November stopped funding a left-wing group that is helping to campaign against Netanyahu

Super Bowl viewers will have to get along with Scarlett Johansson this year.

Cruz and New York Rep. Zeldin complained to Kerry of Obama’s “relentless harassment.”

A Shin Bet sting nabs Arab Israelis after returning from Syria where they join Al Qaeda and ISIS-linked terror groups — a whole group this month.

That’s it. If you didn’t register your party by now, you’re not running for the upcoming Knesset elections.

Simultaneous explosions in Egypt killed and wounded dozens Thursday night.

National religious voters favoring the new Yachad party headed by Eli Yishai may be wasting their votes.

More Articles from Gil Shefler
CANDLES Holocaust Museum and Education Center in Terre Haute, Indiana.

No earth was moved last month at the groundbreaking of one of the nation’s newest Holocaust memorials.

Cellular phones began ringing ominously at Congregation Shaar Hashalom in Houston on Sunday afternoon as the bad news quickly spread among a group gathered for a synagogue meeting.

Cellular phones began ringing ominously at Congregation Shaar Hashalom in Houston on Sunday afternoon as the bad news quickly spread among a group gathered for a synagogue meeting.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/grief-in-israel-and-texas-over-assaf-ramon-tragedy/2009/09/16/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: