Nearly a year after pesticides tragedy, Jerusalem parents greet baby son

Marcy Oster

JERUSALEM (JTA) — The parents of two girls who died after inhaling pesticides in their Jerusalem home welcomed a new son.

The baby was born Monday to Shimon and Michal Gross at the Shaare Zedek Medical Center, the same Jerusalem hospital that in February admitted their daughters Avigail, 1, and Yael, 4, who later died from the poison.

The couple’s sons Michael, 8, and Yitzhak, 6, were hospitalized for a month after inhaling the pesticides.

“There are no words to express the happiness and joy,” Shimon Gross told reporters at the hospital on Monday. “To arrive at the same place that we grieved [our] two girls Avigail and Yael, peace be upon them, [but] this time under joyous circumstances, is a celebration that’s hard to express in words.”

The family became ill on Jan. 21 and sought medical attention for diarrhea and vomiting, but medical staff failed to diagnose their condition as poisoning.

The exterminator, who used poison lethal to humans, left a closed but unsealed container in the apartment planning to complete the job the following day.