Young Victim of Palestinian Firebombing Attack Thanks ‘All The Jewish People’
Ayala Shapira, critically wounded in a firebombing attack on her father’s car in late December, thanked supporters around the world, in an email published by Israel’s Ch. 2 News Wednesday.
“Thank you all for praying for me and thinking of me so much,” wrote the young Israeli, who suffered third-degree burns to 30-40 percent of her body, including her face and chest, in the attack on her father Avner’s vehicle as they neared their community of El Matan in northern Samaria on Dec. 25.
Two Palestinians ambushed the vehicle, with one hurling a firebomb through her open window, as they drove the last several hundred meters towards their village, on the way home from classes at Bar-Ilan University near Tel Aviv.
Avner, who also sustained light to moderate burns in the terror attack, managed to get his daughter out of the burning vehicle immediately after the attack.
While “Ayala has a long way to go,” towards her recovery, her parents, Avner and Ruth said they “share her thoughts, and want to add a special thanks to our family, and our friends at El Matan and [the nearby parent village of] Ma’ale Shomron, who helped us a lot, and the medical teams at the Sheba [Medical Center] who are treating us gently and professionally.”
Two weeks ago, Ayala, who was in a medically induced coma since the attack to lessen her pain, “woke up and recognized her father,” Ruth said. “I wasn’t nearby, and spoke with her on the phone. She responds to simple questions when asked by raising her hand.”
Ruth noted that the rehabilitation process is expected to be substantial due to the extent of her daughter’s wounds.
“There are times that she falls back into unconsciousness. She has a very long way to go,” she said.
IDF forces arrested two suspects in the attack two days later in the nearby village of Azun. The 16 and 17-year-old confessed to stopping the vehicle and throwing the firebomb.
“Immediately after the incident, thanks to accurate [Shin Bet] intelligence and professional execution, we deployed large forces in the village and apprehended the terrorists,” according to Duvdevan infantry unit commander, Col. Guy Berger.
“The IDF will continue to do everything in his power to protect residents of the sector and to thwart future terrorist acts,” Berger said.