IDF soldier declared dead was relative of defense minister

Marcy Oster

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon tweeted that Hadar Goldin, the soldier thought to have been kidnapped by Hamas and later declared dead, is his relative.

“Hadar Goldin is a member of my family. I have known him since he was born. He and the fallen IDF fighters have gone to battle to restore calm and security to Israel. I embrace their families,” Yaalon tweeted Sunday morning, hours after the soldier was declared dead and his family notified.

Yaalon grandfather was the brother of Goldin’s great-grandmother. The publication of the relationship was censored until after Goldin was declared dead for fear that Hamas would use the information.

Yaalon knew Simcha Goldin, the dead soldier’s father, from childhood and had known Hadar since his birth. Yaalon once lectured at Hadar Goldin’s high school at his request, Ynet reported.

The Israel Defense Forces announced early Sunday morning that it had determined that Goldin was killed in action. The determination was based on an analysis of what took place on the battlefield, a medical review, Jewish legal considerations and other considerations.

Hadar and his twin brother, Tzur, served at the same time as combat soldiers and trained together as officers. He and his fiancée, Edna, were engaged a few months ago and were planning their wedding.