In Gaza, Israel Recovers Body of Another Hostage

Ron Benjamin, 53, headed off for a bike ride with friends on Oct. 7
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted May 17, 2024 11:29 AM CDT
Updated May 19, 2024 10:35 AM CDT
Israel Recovers Bodies of 3 Hostages in Gaza
Ricarda Louk sits in front of a placard of her daughter Shani Louk Tuesday Oct. 17, 2023 in Tel Aviv.   (AP Photo/Maya Alleruzzo)
UPDATE May 19, 2024 10:35 AM CDT

The body of another hostage has been recovered in Gaza, the Israeli military announced. A spokesman said that Ron Benjamin, 53, was abducted by Hamas on the morning of Oct. 7 and killed the same day, per the Times of Israel, and that his body was then held hostage in Gaza. His remains reportedly were found along with those of the three hostages whose recovery was announced Friday. Benjamin had planned a bicycle ride with friends but started to head home once the sirens sounded during the attack. He spoke to his wife on the phone, then left a message for his daughter, which was the last he was heard from.

May 17, 2024 11:29 AM CDT

The Israeli military said Friday its troops in Gaza found the bodies of three Israeli hostages taken by Hamas during its Oct. 7 attack, including German-Israeli Shani Louk, who was previously believed killed in the attack. A photo of the 22-year-old's twisted body in the back of a pickup truck ricocheted around the world and brought to light the scale of the militants' attack on communities in southern Israel, the AP reports. Military spokesman Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari said the bodies were recovered in an overnight operation, reports the Times of Israel.

The military identified the other two bodies found as those of a 28-year-old woman, Amit Buskila, and a 56-year-old man, Itzhak Gelerenter. Hagari said all three were killed by Hamas at the Nova music festival, an outdoor dance party near the Gaza border, and their bodies taken into the Palestinian territory. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the deaths "heartbreaking," saying, "We will return all of our hostages, both the living and the dead."

(More Israel-Hamas war stories.)

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