Corporal Yosef Partuk,18, who was killed by a mortar shell in the Eshkol Regional Council, was laid to rest on Wednesday in Jerusalem in a civilian funeral.
The ultra-Orthodox community in which Partuk's family resides, located in the West Bank settlement of Emanuel, is unaccustomed seeing military personnel on their streets, especially not ones arriving there due to a soldier's death. Many of the residents didn't even know that one of their neighbors had died in the line of duty.
Seeking a way to deal with the death of their son, the family and leaders within the community decided against holding a military funeral for Partuk. Even the IDF's death notices, which are usually promptly hung outside the homes of the fallen, did not show up until the late morning hours.
The soldier's family hid inside and asked the media to let them be. If it weren't for the sound of weeping, no one would have known the residents of the home were in mourning.
A representative of the local municipality who arrived at the house said the family wished dearly to stay out of the spotlight.
"This is a very complicated issue; this is not a regular place or a regular bereaved family. They may not even be interested in publicizing this information or receiving coverage – this surely has a different significance in a place like Emanuel," he said.
"Of course they are hurting like any family would and are having difficulty accepting it – the difference is in their approach towards the IDF. It was quietly made clear to officers who arrived here yesterday that the municipality will take care of the (funeral).
Corporal Yosef Partuk
"These are simple and very nice people. They would prefer to stay out of the limelight," he said.
According to the official, the family is downplaying the fact that Partuk was a soldier.
He also said the family faced pressure regarding a number of things – from the comments they made regarding their son to the attempt to prevent the publication photos of him after he had left the ultra-Orthodox world.
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