Our Everyday Heroes

Capt. Ran Ben Atia
Captain Ran Ben Attia before his injury.

Captain Ran Ben Attia

Always Striving Toward the Future

Captain Ran Ben Attia served as an Operations Officer in the Nahal Brigade during Operation Protective Edge (2014). While leading his men into one of the tunnels, a sniper shot him nearly blowing off his hand. The bullet penetrated his thigh and hip and lodged itself in the delicate nervous system around his spine in his pelvis. Thanks to the quick evacuation by the Air Force rescue unit, his life was saved.

He underwent lifesaving surgeries and was told that he would have to live with the bullet inside his pelvis for the rest of his life.  Three weeks later, after the army analyzed the x-rays of his wounds, an emergency surgery was required to remove the bullet for fear that it might explode inside his body at any given moment.

Various experts needed to be consulted and it was decided that a single surgeon, dressed in protective gear would perform the delicate and complex surgery.  This would have to take place without the use of any electronic equipment because it might possibly trigger the explosives in the bullet.

The operation was successful, and the bullet was extracted with a pair of tweezers!

Ran has had a long rehabilitation process.  He has spent two long years in rehab, at first walking with two crutches, and then with a cane.  He began coming to Beit Halochem to work out at our fitness center.  Then in August of 2016, despite the severity of his injuries, he began to train with the help of Ron Shilon his personal coach to take part in an “Ironman” competition, which involves running, swimming and cycling a total of 220 km. He had no previous cycling or swimming experience, but had run a couple of marathons before his injury.

In 2016 he had completed a Triathlon, and also joined the 5-day Courage in Motion bike ride, cycling 100-120 km. daily alongside 110 overseas riders from Canada and the USA.

Ran has celebrated other amazing and inspiring achievements: his marriage just before his injury, and now the birth of his son Lavie.

Looking forward, as he continues his rehabilitation, Capt. Ben Attia has been awarded two Academic Scholarships through ZDVO. He received the first while pursuing an MA in Public Policy at the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya, and a second last year while taking an MA in Business Administration at Bar Ilan University.

Capt. Ben Attia’s family and friends have been with him all along. They have pushed him and encouraged him throughout these difficult years all the way to the finish line! He has continued to overcome all obstacles, and accomplish so many goals – unbelievable achievements for anyone, let alone someone who has undergone the physical and mental trials and tribulations that he has been through!


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