21-year-old Israeli soldier killed in terror attacks weeks after giving inspirational speech in Monroe
Israeli soldier Raz Mizrahi was just 21 years old, but she had quite the story to tell. The young woman was seriously injured in 2021 during an attack in Jerusalem, when a terrorist drove into Mizrahi and a group of military patrol officers and shot at them.
In September, Mizrahi traveled to the U.S. to speak to dozens of women and teens at Chabad of Orange County in Monroe about her experiences and gave an inspirational speech on Sept. 10 about resiliency and perseverance.
“I’m still fighting. I’m still standing and I’m more in love with Israel than ever before,” said Mizrahi.
Mizrahi returned home to Israel in September and was tragically killed four weeks later. The Israeli soldier was off-duty and among hundreds of people massacred by terrorist militants on Oct. 7, as Hamas groups first began a series of coordinated attacks, at the Tribe of Nova gathering – a music festival outside of Gaza.
“She had a lot of spirit and love for her country,” said Chana Burston, with Chabad of Orange County. “Knowing that she’s not here anymore with us, when she was just here is heart wrenching. It’s still hard for me to believe.”
Burston says Mizrahi danced with the group at Chabad and played with teens. They had hoped she would have the opportunity to speak in Monroe again and were making plans for students to meet with her when they visited Israel.
“She had a lot of spirit and a lot of love for her country. She loved coming here. She loved meeting us and dancing with the teens,” says Burston.
Chabad of Orange County dedicated its Shabbat services on Friday to Mizrahi and are fundraising to pay for essential gear for Israeli fighters. Their CTeen and Chabad Hebrew school students wrote letters packaged with sweets for the Israel Defense Force.
Burston says Mizrahi’s spirit is still felt among those here who met her.
“Her legacy is here. She is an example of what we are fighting against right now and we will pull through,” Burston says.