Gilad’s family were particularly proud as his two younger brothers followed in his footsteps and are both currently in the midst of training to become divers. Gilad himself is the first to serve as an officer in the submarines unit.
Within less than two years, the three brothers will be serving together, albeit on different submarines since military protocol prohibits family members from serving together on the same vessel.
“Our parents are very happy and proud,” said Gilad, who received a commendation from the Navy commander.
Thirty two cadets graduated from the Naval Officers Course, including two women. Against the backdrop of recent events vis-à-vis female combat soldiers and Rabbi Yigal Levinstein’s speech, Chief of Staff Gadi Eisenkot took it upon himself to pay homage to the two women in his speech at the ceremony.
"Their sense of duty and patriotism led them to this difficult and challenging role,” he said. “You play a very important part in establishing female roles in the IDF’s fighting force.”
Cpt. Gilad, a father of two, offered some field insight into the issue of co-ed service. “The female cadets were under the same conditions and faced the same physical pressures as the male cadets, and they did it with bravery. There were no differences; we did it all together while ensuring proper integration and mutual respect, without harming one another."
The course’s chief instructor, Maj. Sarel Martinovsky said: "We command over the most precious resource, which is human beings. We have some amazing soldiers here."
(Translated and edited by N. Elias)