Lone soldier from New Jersey one of 2 soldiers killed in grenade explosion

Marcy Oster

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Two Israeli soldiers, including a lone soldier from New Jersey, were killed when a grenade one of the soldiers was carrying exploded.

The American-born soldier killed in the Sunday morning accident has been namedby the IDF as Sgt. Shlomo Rindenow, 20, a lone soldier from New Jersey who lived in Kibbutz Sde Yoav. The other dead soldier, who reportedly was holding the grenade when it exploded, has been identified as Sgt. 1st Class Husam Tafish, 24, a reservist from the Druze village of Beit Jann in northern Israel.

Three other soldiers were injured in the explosion, which occurred near Majdal Shams, a Druze village located near Mount Hermon.

The army said it is investigating the incident and that it is not clear why the soldier was holding a grenade. The soldiers were part of the 601 Asaf Battalion of the Combat Engineering Corps.

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The Times of Israel reported that Ridenow is one of five brothers who moved to Israeli from Passaic, New Jersey, to volunteer in the Israel Defense Forces. He moved from Passaic to Israel two years ago and spent a year volunteering with a search and rescue organization in Israel, his brother, Jeffrey Tower, told the Times of Israel. Another brother reportedly is currently serving in a paratroopers unit.

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