Tue. Feb 27th, 2024

Aner Shapiro, 22, heroically attempted to defend his peers after the attack on the Supernova music festival, near the Gaza border (Picture: Sky News / Getty Images)

An off-duty soldier was killed after throwing back seven grenades launched by Hamas at a music festival.

Aner Shapiro, who was 22 and British-Israeli, heroically attempted to defend his peers after the Supernova music festival, close to the Gaza border, was attacked on October 7.

His grandma Yamima Ben-Menahem told Sky News: ‘They were trying to get out of the party and then there were alarms and there were missiles.

‘And they went into a shelter – he was with his friend – but there were about 30 other people there.

‘First of all he calmed them down saying the army was only half an hour away and he was sure everything was going to be okay.

‘He was a natural leader, wherever he was.’

She said Hamas militants approached the shelter he was hiding in alongside others, and they started throwing hand grenades into it.

Read the latest on the Israel-Hamas war by following our live blog

Aner, pictured here with girlfriend Shelly, was off-duty at the time of the attack (Picture: Sky News)

His grandma Yamima Ben-Menahem said he was ‘a natural leader’ (Picture: Sky News)

His family did not learn about what happened to him until three days later (Picture: Sky News)

The Supernova music festival, close to the Gaza border, was attacked on October 7 (Picture: AFP via Getty Images)

Aner’s parents identified him hiding in the shelter at the festival in this photo

Yamima added: ‘When the terrorists came nearer, he stood at the entrance, and when they started throwing grenades into the shelter, he said, “I’m going to throw them back,” and if I miss one, you do the rest of the work.

‘He just stood there and threw back one grenade after the other.

‘From what his friends told us he managed to throw back about seven grenades, and then the last one exploded in his hands.’

She said the family did not learn about what happened to him until three days later.

Yamima said: ‘The people who survived started calling us after they found out who his family was and one after the other said “he saved our lives”.’

It is thought Hamas took up to six hostages out of the hidden group, including his friend Hersh Goldberg, and opened fire on the rest. Only those who received minor injuries survived.

Paying tribute to her grandson, she added: ‘He was handsome, good-natured, gifted in all kinds of areas, he painted very well and he played the piano.’

The war continues after the Israel Defence Force (IDF) carried out a ‘targeted raid’ in northern Gaza overnight.

Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at webnews@metro.co.uk.

For more stories like this, check our news page.

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