Reuven Schmerling, resident of the community of Elkana and victim of latest terrorist attack against Israelis [Photo Source: Courtesy]

The body of 69-year-old Reuven Schmerling, a resident of the community of Elkana (Samaria), was found in a storage unit belonging to his business in Kafr Qassem’s industrial area earlier this month, hours before the start of the Jewish festival of Sukkot. The body was found containing multiple stab wounds, according to Israeli police officials. At first, Israeli authorities did not want to rule the murder of Schmerling a result of terrorism and were investigating other motives such as a business deal gone wrong or the result of disgruntled employees. This past Sunday, the Defense Ministry decided to recognize the murder in the Arab Israeli city a result of terror. Two Arab suspects have been arrested in connection with the murder.

The father of four owned a coal business in Kafr Qassem, about a half-hour drive from Elkana. His body was found in one of the business’s storage units by his son, who alerted police and emergency services.

On Friday October 6 over 1,000 attended the funeral of Mr. Schmerling, where mourners recalled the most recent victim of terror as “a man of kindness” who “believed in every human being.”

Members of Reuven Schmerling’s family wore shirts they had made for his 70th birthday, which they had planned to celebrate together on October 5th, the day after his body was found covered in stab wounds.

Schmerling’s son, Shai, who praised his father for having “believed in every human being” and always seeking to help others, also noted the birthday.

“We were supposed to be celebrating your 70th birthday now, and as we wrote on the t-shirts that we prepared for you, may you stay forever young,” he said. “God, please keep father safe and give strength to mother and the whole family.”

Acts of terrorism against the Jewish residents of Judea and Samaria are unfortunately something that occurs all too often. Just a few weeks ago, an Arab terrorist opened fire on security personnel in Har Adar (Samaria), killing 3 Israelis and causing tremendous sorrow and grief to the entire nation. In Judea, the roads traveled are hotbeds for Arab stone throwers that have caused material damage and casualties to many drivers in Judea.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the Schmerling family and their loved ones. May Reuven Schmerling’s name be for a blessing.