An emotional and patriotic Facebook post by Sgt. 1st Class Amit Ben Yigal gives a glimpse into the heart and soul of the soldier who was killed on Tuesday morning during an operation in an Arab village in northern Samaria. The post was written on Israel’s Memorial Day, which fell on April 28:

“Every year since I can remember, on the eve of Memorial Day for Fallen IDF Soldiers, something grabs hold of my heart. I cannot remember one occasion on which I have not been moved to tears. Something grabs my heart and squeezes it tight.”

Ben Yigal then described what it meant for him to serve in the Israeli Defense Forces.

“It is never looking behind you because you know the entire nation is with you. It is hearing the national anthem and getting goosebumps. It is not letting who you are interfere with who you could become.

“I am Amit Ben Yigal and I am proud to be part of the Golani Brigade, proud to be part of a years-long tradition, to follow in the footsteps of many before me and be a role model for those who will follow.”

The 21-year-old described the emotions he felt if anything were to happen to him on the battlefield.

“Right away the tears come trickling down my face as I am struck by this thought:

“‘A kiss from my mother awaits me and my father’s exuberance when I call and say I am on my way home.’

“Then the tears are no longer a trickle – they are a waterfall and I must make them stop, for I am in uniform.”

Ben Yigal died when a heavy rock was dropped on his head from a roof just as his unit was exiting the village. He was an only son.