Rabbis speak about the death of Israeli soldier Sgt. Sean Carmeli

Tuesday, July 22, 2014 - 9:31am

An Israeli soldier, who grew up on Brownsville, has been killed in action. Sergeant Sean Carmeli was killed over the weekend in Gaza.

Carmeli's parents are from Israel, but spent 20 years building their business on South Padre Island, where Sgt. Carmeli grew up. He attended St. Joseph Academy in Brownsville, but completed his schooling in Israel and joined the defense force.

A local synagogue on South Padre Island is named after Carmeli's grandfather and the Rabbi there says the soldier's name will now also be associated with it.

Rabbi Hecht shared fond memories of Sean stating, "From my experience with Sean, he had a very gentle soul. Sometimes you think of a soldier being a warrior or a big tough body builder. He was a very loving person, always had a smile, always brought jokes to the conversation. He had friends that always liked to hang around him, he was always a very pleasant character."

Rabbi Simony represents the South Padre Island Jewish community. He visited Carmeli's parents on Saturday. He says Carmeli's mother told him she had a bad feeling something had gone wrong, "She had  a feeling and I see it. I see it and she got out from the apartment. I told Alon, 'I think you need to call someone, call some officer in Israel', tell her to speak with someone, tell her to be calm because I see how she was not calm. She was very nervous, a couple hours after we heard the news."

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