The love of her life was killed on October 7, then she returned to service

Captain Idan Baloi and Lihi Shmashian met on enlistment day and became a couple four months later; after three years of serving together, Idan was killed on October 7 in the Gaza envelope, while Lihi was with her battalion in the north; Despite the pain, she went back to her IDF service: 'I promised him I would return to duty'

Nina Fox|Updated:
"Our relationship was very special," tearfully recounts Lihi Shmashian, 22, from Holon, about her partner, Captain Idan Baloi, who served as an officer in the Golani Brigade and fell in Nahal Oz on October 7.
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"We were together on the same path and experienced extreme things together. We wanted to travel together and then get married and have children. We did everything simultaneously, and it was a huge part of my life," she shared.
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סרן עידן באלוי, ליהי שמשיאין
סרן עידן באלוי, ליהי שמשיאין
Lihi Shmashian and Captain Idan Baloi
(Photo: Herzl Yosef)
They met on their enlistment day. Four months later, they became a couple and were together until October 7. Shmashian described that black Saturday of October 7: "Idan spent the Shabbat in Nahal Oz while I was in the Golan Heights. Until 10:30 a.m., we spoke, and I was very calm that he was fine. At noon, he stopped receiving messages, and his phone became unavailable.
"I started to panic, and I felt my heart sinking. His family and I contacted everyone we knew to get information. Although we were completely disconnected from him, I had to continue functioning in the battalion, mobilize reserve forces, and maintain order at home."
After four days during which Shmashian and Baloi's family didn't know his fate, they received the grim news. "I waited a long time for an answer because there were many rumors. Between Tuesday and Wednesday, we received an update that he was killed, and I was informed about it in the army," she recounted. "When they informed me, I was still in the battalion, and what went through my mind was that Idan expects me to stay and work and not leave. I promised him at the funeral that I would stay in the battalion and do what he would want me to do."
First published: 17:35, 02.19.24
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