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New Jersey Commemorates Fallen Hero from October 7th Hamas Conflict

Honoring IDF Staff Sgt. Itay Glisko’s Brave Sacrifice.

“The good ones go first. Itay will stay with us until our last breath,” Oren Glisko, the father of IDF Staff Sgt. Itay Glisko, told JNS on Tuesday.

Last week, the State of New Jersey honored Itay, a 20-year-old American citizen serving in the IDF’s Golani Brigade who was killed by Hamas terrorists on Oct. 7. The official proclamation was delivered by Sarri Singer, the daughter of state Senator Robert Singer (R-30), to the Glisko family’s home in Yokneam, northern Israel.

“This legislature hereby salutes the memory of Itay Ofek Glisko, pays tribute to his valiant service, and extends sincere sympathy and profound condolences to all who mourn his passing,” the proclamation reads. “Be it further resolved, that a duly authenticated copy of this resolution, signed by the Senate president and the assembly speaker and attested by the Senate secretary and the assembly clerk, be transmitted to the family of Staff Sergeant Itay Ofek Glisko,” it adds.

Oren Glisko emphasized that the proclamation “shows that America cares and shares our grief. As long as we speak about him, he remains somehow alive.” Itay’s mother, Liat, added that the personal visit from Sarri Singer made the recognition deeply meaningful, saying, “We want the story of Itay and his name to be known all over the United States.”

Born in New Jersey in 2003, Itay moved to Israel with his expatriate parents when he was one year old and grew up in Yokneam. He loved nature, enjoyed fishing, camping, and was part of the local Scouts group, Shevet Shachar. “He was one of a kind, the heart and soul of everybody. He is the color we’re all missing in our lives,” Liat said.

On Oct. 7, Itay, who was supposed to spend Simchat Torah with his family, filled in for his superior officer who was on leave. He was stationed 500 meters from the Gaza border when 3,000 Palestinian terrorists invaded. Itay sent a message to his family at 6:30 a.m. saying, “Don’t worry, I’m in a [bomb] shelter.” Throughout the day, he and his battalion fought valiantly, evacuating the wounded and holding off the terrorists. Sadly, Itay and three other soldiers were killed while trying to protect their comrades.

For four days, the Glisko family did not know Itay’s fate. They hoped he might have been captured, searching lists of the kidnapped and missing. Their worst fears were confirmed on Oct. 11 when the IDF informed them of Itay’s death.

The loss of Itay is a profound tragedy for his family and community. “Our lives will continue. We have two more children, we are trying to maintain some sort of a routine for them,” said Oren. “At the same time, we take every opportunity to bring Itay’s name up. We will always speak of him and we will get to the United States to tell his story and perpetuate his memory. Everyone will know how much he helped his country and loved humanity. We will never forget him. He will stay with us until our last breath.”

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