While on the HALB Mission to Israel, some HALB parents had the opportunity to visit and bring letters to Mordechai, an IDF soldier who was seriously injured in Gaza. During their visit, Mordechai played his violin, which once belonged to his great uncle, who lost his life defending Israel years ago.

That hospital visit at Tel HaShomer was the start of a special connection between Mordechai and HALB. Mordechai was so moved by the letters he received from HALB students, once he had recovered enough, he decided to make the trip to America and visit.

On Monday, Mordechai came to HALB, starting the day with the lower school. He joined the morning program with Mr. Altabe, spoke to the students, and led them in song as they sang HaTikvah, the Mi SheBeirach and Acheinu. He then spoke with the Middle School and led them in song and gave them words of chizuk. Finally, he visited SKA Seniors and shared his whole inspirational story.

,Mordechai’s biggest message to HALB students, and all of us, was the following: He may be physically fighting in Israel, but the students here are soldiers, too – davening and doing anything they can to support Israel from far and with their t’filos and mitzvos. It was an incredibly moving and inspirational day for students, teachers, and Mordechai. Am Yisrael Chai!