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‘Hero’ mom asks for help after Beersheba home destroyed by Gaza rocket

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TIMES OF ISRAEL STAFF

“I don’t have a home now,” said Miri Tamano, who managed to pull her three sons, aged 8, 9, and 12, into the apartment’s bomb shelter moments before the rocket struck. “[But] I have three children, and each one is the whole world.” Tamano is a single mother who is raising the boys alone.

The explosion, which took place shortly before 4:00, knocked over several of the home’s walls and destroyed most of its contents.

“Because of her quick wits, only property was harmed,” Miri’s sister Ora told reporters on Wednesday morning.

“My sister is a lioness,” Ora said. When the rocket sirens went off in the middle of the night, “she just grabbed the kids by force and dragged them to the shelter. That’s why they’re alive.”

“Right now, we’re just trying to get back into a routine, as much as possible, for the kids, to calm my sister down. Everyone is telling her she’s a hero, but she can’t stop crying.”

Mother and sons were taken to the hospital and treated for anxiety early on Wednesday, but were otherwise unharmed in the attack.

“We mostly need basic things that will help us start over. The house is gone. Everything is gone,” said Tamano.

A family member handed reporters a list of basic goods the family needed urgently, from cornflakes, canned tuna, and plastic dishes to toothbrushes, underwear, and socks for the three boys.

As the victim of what Israel terms a terror attack, Tamano is eligible for assistance from a special fund managed by the property tax department of the Israel Tax Authority.

The department said Wednesday that it would send officials to assess the damage to the home, and would transfer an initial sum of NIS 10 000 ($2 700) to the family within 24 hours. It also said it would cover the costs of the family’s hotel stay until new accommodation could be found.

Under Tax Authority compensation rules for terror victims, the government will fund the rebuilding of the Tamanos’ home, but the process will take months.

Shortly after Tamano issued the appeal, the Jewish Agency for Israel said it would hand the family a NIS 4 000 ($1 100) grant by the end of the day. The grant was donated on Wednesday by the Jewish community of Montreal, Canada, to help the family cover their immediate needs.

The family is also eligible for a NIS 25 000 ($6 800) “recovery grant” from the agency’s Victims of Terror Fund, the organisation said, but it was not immediately clear when the funds would be available.

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