Muawia Kabha was the first responder at the fatal car accident on Highway 6 on February 13th that claimed the lives of three Golani soldiers. Kabha, who is Muslim, is a United Hatzalah volunteer paramedic. He had been driving his car home and was passing the Nizzane Oz interchange of Highway 6 when United Hatzalah’s dispatch and command center notified him about the tragic accident.
Kabha immediately turned his car around and headed to the scene of the accident which was nearby. He arrived at the scene in less than three minutes and treated many of the soldiers for their injuries. In addition to the two soldiers who were pronounced dead at the scene, ten others were injured. Among them was Sgt. Shiloh Siman Tov, who had been critically injured but was still conscious when Kabha got to him. Kabha provided emergency first aid treatment to Shiloh and had a short conversation with him, prior to his being transported to the hospital via helicopter.
Six days later, Shiloh Siman Tov succumbed to his injuries.
Kabha wrote a letter about his thoughts after the incident. In the letter he wrote:
“My heart weeps. It is hard to believe that we only met once and it was only for a few minutes while you were lying on Highway Six a few days ago between broken pieces of a hummer and unable to help yourself. You were lying there, between broken pieces of metal that hampered your movement, with your wounds further immobilizing you. It is hard to believe that one moment of carelessness brought down a hero such as yourself.
The metal, the injuries and the intense pain that you were feeling in that moment broke your body. They broke your ability to get up. But they were not able to break your spirit, your soul and your heroism.
My dear brother, from the first moment that we began working to save you, myself and my wife together, we already understood that not just a hero lay before us, but a superhero. Your helplessness caused us all to be helpless. We tried to treat you, we tried to make sure that you stayed conscious. You mumbled a little, you spoke to us and you created a relaxed atmosphere that strengthened us. We tried to give you strength and you turned it around and caused us to be strengthened.
How can one even begin to explain it? How can it be a that a true hero like yourself can die? In the few moments that we spent together, you exuded strength to those around you. You exuded hope. There were times that you tried to calm us down and raise our spirits. So how can a hero such as yourself die.?
Even at the very moment in which the helicopter landed to transport you to the hospital, what mattered most to you was your friends who were also injured in the accident. Even as the metal rods had entrapped you, your spirit spread around the entire crash site and encouraged us to help. You gave strength to the rescuers and EMS teams and what is more so, you gave strength to the injured, your fellow soldiers.
As I was laying my head down on my pillow in the moments before I went to sleep I was reminded of your serenity, your heroism and your fighting spirit. After all the feelings of loss from the night with the death of two of your friends, your heroism left me with a sense of hope and pride. A small smile crossed my face with the knowledge that there are still heroes like you around, my dear brother.
How can a hero die? My dearest brother, the injuries subdued your body, the injuries stopped your heart, but your heroism still beats in my heart. It beats in the hearts of all of the people who were around you during those difficult moments. You were a true hero and you will remain a true hero in our hearts forever.
Rest in your final resting place in peace, my dear brother. My heart weeps for you. Thank you for your heroism.”
– Muawia Kabha, Volunteer paramedic with United Hatzalah
Kabha asked to eulogize Shiloh at his funeral which took place on Tuesday and included most of these thoughts in the eulogy that he gave in front of the gathered crowd.
To watch the video click here: https://youtu.be/FOMRA_gxRBg