Vyacheslav Golev, the 23-year-old security guard killed in Friday’s terror shooting at the entrance to the West Bank settlement of Ariel, was laid to rest Sunday in his hometown of Beit Shemesh.
Hundreds of people attended the ceremony.
Golev is survived by his parents, seven siblings and fiancée Victoria Fligelman.
Fligelman was also stationed at the guard post during the attack, and survived after Golev shielded her with his body, saving her life.
Beit Shemesh Mayor Aliza Bloch called Golev a hero who defended the Ariel community and his fiancée “like a brick wall.”
She said the Golev family, who immigrated to Israel from Russia, were “the story of Beit Shemesh and of Israel. With the story of your lives you brought together the story of Israel and of aliyah. You are the mosaic of Israel.”
Golev’s cousin, Vladimir, said at the funeral, “You had such a good, big heart. We’ll tell our children and grandchildren about you, and you’ll be a role model for them.”
“We all loved you and will miss you very much,” he said.
Daniel Zilbergstein, one of Golev’s childhood friends, said, “I never believed this would happen to a friend, someone so close to me.”
“He always defended everyone, whether his siblings, friends, everyone he knew, if something happened, he was always the first to defend them,” he told Channel 12.
Tourism Minister Yoel Razvozov and Likud lawmaker Keti Shitrit attended the ceremony.
Golev was a former student at Ariel University. He had recently moved to live with his fiancée in the West Bank community. They became engaged just a few weeks before the attack.
During the Friday night attack, a vehicle drove up to the guard post, where a gunman in the passenger seat opened fire. The gunman and the driver then both got out and both fired into the guard post before driving off.
Golev’s death was declared at the scene.
Fligelman has been devastated and is unable to discuss the attack with any authorities as a witness.
After a 20-hour manhunt, counterterrorism forces on Saturday evening arrested two Palestinians allegedly behind the deadly terrorist attack. The two gunmen were arrested in the nearby town of Qarawat Bani Hassan.
The attack on Ariel came as tensions have risen sharply between Israel and the Palestinians in recent weeks against the backdrop of repeated terror attacks in Israeli cities that left 14 dead.
The escalation has come amid the Muslim holy month of Ramadan — often a period of high tension in Israel and the West Bank.
The army has stepped up its West Bank activities in an attempt to crack down on the spiraling violence. The ensuing raids sparked clashes that left at least 25 Palestinians dead.