In a somber development, the American Israeli community is mourning the loss of Gadi Haggai, a 73-year-old with strong New York roots, confirmed to have been slain while in the custody of Hamas operatives. Haggai’s demise was disclosed on a recent Friday, casting a pall over hopes for his safe return.
Haggai, whose maternal lineage traces back to Manhattan and paternal heritage to Detroit, and his wife, Judih Weinstein, originally from Goshen, NY, had found their haven in Israel three decades ago. The tranquility of their life was abruptly upended by an unexpected act of terror on October 7th.
The couple, residents of Kibbutz Nir Oz, were enjoying a routine walk when they were ambushed by armed militants. The assault was swift and brutal, leaving Haggai fatally wounded and Weinstein’s whereabouts and condition currently unknown.
Gadi Haggai, remembered fondly for his wit and musical talent as a flautist, was a cherished figure in his community. The IDF Orchestra alumnus devoted his life to the pursuit of musical excellence, leaving behind a legacy of melody and mirth.
The tragic incident has reverberated through the family and the broader American Israeli community. As the search for Weinstein continues, the hearts of many are with the Haggai-Weinstein family, sharing in their grief and hoping for resolution.
As tributes pour in, President Joe Biden expressed profound sorrow over the tragedy, extending condolences and solidarity with the Haggai family. The loss of Gadi Haggai is a stark reminder of the continuing conflicts in the region and the human cost that too often accompanies them. With the situation still evolving, the American Israeli community and the international diaspora stand united in grief and hope.