IDF commando Chief Sgt. David Yehuda Yitzchak was laid to rest at the Mount Herzl Military Cemetery in Jerusalem on Wednesday, hours after being shot as Israeli troops withdrew from Jenin.
Yitzchak, 23, a non-commissioned officer from the Egoz special operations unit, was treated for a gunshot wound at the scene before being evacuated to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
He was a resident of Beit El, an Israeli town north of Jerusalem in the Binyamin region of Samaria. The IDF is investigating the possibility that he was hit by friendly fire.
The family asked that there be no media coverage of the funeral. Thousands of people attended the ceremony.
The military launched a major counterterror operation in Jenin in the early hours of Monday, including the entry into the Samaria city of significant ground forces.
More than 1,000 IDF troops participated in the two-day raid, in what is believed to be the largest deployment in Judea and Samaria in two decades. The military said on Tuesday its forces had killed at least 12 Palestinians, all of them terrorists, and arrested more than 100 terrorism suspects.
Yitzchak was shot in a tight alleyway while securing the beginning of the military’s withdrawal.
“We are saddened by the fall of the Egoz commando soldier, Chief Sgt. David Yehuda Yitzchak, of blessed memory,” President Isaac Herzog wrote ahead of the funeral. “On behalf of the people of Israel, I send condolences to his family, his loved ones, and all the residents of Beit El. We will continue to fight terrorism with determination.”
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu eulogized the young man as a valued fighter. “May his memory be a blessing and remain in our hearts forever,” the premier tweeted.
“My heart and thoughts are with the family of the late Chief Sgt. David Yehuda Yitzhak,” Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said in a statement, adding that he thanks the security forces for their “exemplary performance” during the two-day operation in Jenin.
Back home in Beit El, local council head Shay Alon mourned Yitzchak as “an Egoz Unit soldier, the eldest son of Moshe and Emuna, and a brother to six brothers and sisters.”
Arnon Atzmon, Yitzchak’s uncle, said his nephew was a leader who always took on responsibility. “Everybody adores him. When I’d think of David, I’d always smile,” he said.