After Dr. Omri Nir’s tragic death, his former students began sharing their stories about him on Facebook. Two of his students decided to take it upon themselves to gather all the stories and create a special book they plan to give to his family.

Dr. Omri Nir and his son Ilai

Dr. Omri Nir and his son Ilai Photo Credit: Courtesy of the family/Channel 2 News

On Friday, Dr. Omri Nir, a well-respected expert on Hezbollah and Lebanese politics and history who taught at several universities in Israel, heroically attempted to save his 10-year-old son Ilai from falling off a cliff in southern Israel. However, both of them fell off the cliff together as Nir hugged his son tightly in order to shield him from the fall, sustaining most of the impact.

Nir was pronounced dead at the scene while Ilai was rushed to a local hospital, where he succumbed to his injuries a few days later. Following his tragic death, two of Nir’s students started a special project in order to commemorate his legacy as a teacher.

After Nir’s students from Tel Aviv University, Hebrew University, Ben Gurion University and Achva Academic College learned about the tragedy, many of them started to share their personal experiences and stories about Nir on Facebook. Two of his former students are currently collecting these stories in order to turn them into a special collection for the Nir family.  

“The idea started after I wrote about my personal story,” said Ruth Shafir. “I was sharing the story about how Omri taught us for two months via Skype because he broke his leg and felt that he owned us to continue teaching. You barely see this type of thing, this commitment with love for a profession and students.”

After she published the post, many additional students who had Omri as a lecturer started to comment on it, sharing their stories about their beloved teacher. Shafir and her friend Maayan Peless wrote a post on Facebook calling for all students who had stories about Omri to share them so that they can make a book for his family.