Sixty plus people gathered at the home of Liat and Peter Reisman for a very special evening. A diverse crowd of donors, friends, and IDF soldiers spent the first 45 minutes of the night schmoozing and noshing as we waited for everybody to arrive. In attendance were co-chairs Hyla and Steve Ruby and Aram Rubinson, Ellen Weintraub, Phil Jacobs , Major General (Res.) Meir Klifi-Amir, CEO and National Director of FIDF and Brigadier General (Res.) Gila Klfif-Amir. The hors d’oeuvres were tasty and the company was impressive, but the true highlight of the evening was hearing first-hand stories from IDF soldiers.

We were so pleased to have with us Lieutenant (Res.) Heli, Captain Ori, Captain Joshua, and Captain Ohad. The program was opened by Peter Reisman who has been involved in FIDF for nearly 17 years now and also served in the IDF for seven years where he met his wife Liat. After a brief introduction, Peter read the names of the fallen soldiers who were killed in a terror attack just one day before in East Jerusalem, and Rabbi Bienenfeld lead us in a moment of silence and the El Malei Rachamim, the prayer for the departed..

Before the spotlight was handed over to our guests from the IDF, Major General (Res.) Meir Klifi-Amir spoke about the mission of FIDF, and ultimately, how when we support these young men and women, we are not just fighting terrorism, we are not just defending Israel, but we are,

“Fighting a war on values and defending the free world.”

The soldiers shared their stories of hardship and heroism and the different aspects of their lives that have been touched by FIDF donors. Captain Ohad spoke about Operation Protective Edge and the moment that changed his life forever.