Alumnae from SKA visit bereaved family in Israel


SKA alumnae and seminary students Zahava Gros, Henna Storch and Michal Yacker, accompanied by Principal Raizi Chechik, visited the family of Shir Hajaj, a young soldier who was tragically murdered in the recent truck attack in Jerusalem.

Ms. Chechik brought a personalized letter of condolence signed by students of the Stella K. Abraham High School for Girls and, together with the students, hand-delivered the letter on Jan. 25.

The Hajaj family warmly welcomed them and shared many fond memories of their oldest daughter, Shir. They talked about how dedicated Shir was to her community, spending hours amidst her packed university schedule, tutoring young children and volunteering for Shachen Tov, a food distribution organization.

The Hajaj family described Shir’s pride and commitment to her service in the IDF, exemplified by the fact that she signed on for an extended period to give back to the country she loved. Displaying many photos, the family members tearfully expressed their appreciation to the SKA student body for dedicating a day of tefillah and learning for their daughter and the other victims, ensuring that their memories live on.

Letters of condolences were also sent to the families of the three other victims of the attack — Lt. Yael Yekutiel of Givatayim, Cadet Shira Tzur of Haifa, and Cadet Erez Orbach of Alon Shvut. Mrs. Helen Spirn, Head of School, received a note expressing how much the letter meant to the Orbach family:

The father, Uri Orbach, described how comforting it has been to receive condolences from people all over the world.

“We are so proud of the numerous ways our students connect to their brethren in Israel in times of sadness as well as times of joy,” said Ms. Chechik. “When we left the Hajaj family, we said to Mr. Hajaj ‘kulanu chaverim’ (we are all friends, we are all connected). And he so correctly responded, ‘lo, kulanu mishpacha’ (we are all family).

“That is the message that our SKA students really embody in all of their Israel advocacy efforts.”