Since Oct. 7, more than 150 brave soldiers, rabbis, doctors, dentists, officers, investigators and military personnel have been working day and night dealing with the unspeakable horrors committed against Israeli civilians and soldiers when Hamas terrorists infiltrated Israeli soil on that Shabbat HaShakor (Black Shabbat).

Through a new campaign by the East Valley JCC, you can help support members of the Israel Defense Forces Casualty Treatment Unit. 

Mahane Shura is the base for processing thousands of bodies for accurate identification of the fallen. The Casualty Treatment Unit of the IDF is the army unit of the Israeli Rabbinate forced to deal with the complexities of determining death. The unit is composed of reservists who hold different jobs and roles in their day-to-day lives. On that fateful Shabbat, they were immediately called up, and pulled away from their homes, Shabbat tables, synagogues, family holidays, and more, working tirelessly to ensure soldiers and civilians are respected and honored even in death. This includes providing family members with the respect and relief to say goodbye to their loved ones and fulfilling proper burial and Shiva customs. 

By adopting these heroes, you will support, strengthen and assist them through therapeutic training sessions as they recover from the unimaginable atrocities, seeing bodies decimated, desecrated, defamed, and forced to determine deaths according to Jewish law and tradition. 

Your support assists in the well-being of this unit, giving them the necessary rest, recovery, and tools they need to work through the pain and trauma of their roles to process and heal at a therapeutic training retreat. Trained professionals will accompany them, offering solace and support as they navigate these distressing challenges and traumas together with other members of their unit.

The men and women of the Casualty Treatment unit of the IDF continue to show the victims love and gentleness even in death. They work tirelessly to identify individuals and preserve their dignity. They stare death in the face as questions arise. They cope daily with the physical, mental and psychological effects of the sights they experience. Honoring human beings with the utmost delicacy as people created in the image of G-d and according to Halacha is their primary objective.

Since Oct. 7, this unit has faced new challenges, Halachic rulings that had not been active for centuries. Forced to address the issue of cars where Israelis had been shot to death, missing body parts, mutilation and ensuring blood, bone and tendon are collected for burial as a whole intensifies the complexities. This is only a glimpse of what the unit faces. 

This dedicated unit persists with humility, commitment and perseverance and we are proud of them as they honor and respect the dead.