The public’s response to an appeal for platelet donations for a severely injured IDF soldier was overwhelming. However, he succumbed to his wounds on Sunday.

Sgt. Shahar Shalev, 20, died on Sunday morning, becoming the 67th IDF soldier killed during Operation Protective Edge and the 72nd Israeli casualty of the war.

A paratrooper in an elite unit, Shalev hailed from Alonei HaBashan, a community in the Golan Heights.

The unit was hit by a roadside bomb in southern Gaza on July 23. Three other IDF soldiers were killed in the incident: Lt. Paz Eliyahu, 22, of Kibbutz Evron in the Western Galilee; Staff Sgt. Lee Matt, 19 of Eilat, and Staff Sgt. Shahar Dauber, 20, of Kibbutz Ginegar in the Lower Galilee.

Shalev, who is survived by his parents and five siblings, had lost a right leg and was receiving a daily platelet transfusion.  His parents had publicized the need for platelet donations and the response was overwhelming.

“I received all kinds of phone calls from people I don’t know, saying they wanted to help,” Shimon Shalev, the father, told Channel 2 last week, thanking “the people of Israel who have devoted themselves to helping us out. Each contribution was significant.”

The most recent victim before Sunday was Sgt. Natanel Maman, who succumbed to his wounds on Friday morning. A week earlier, Maman had been hit by shrapnel from a rocket that exploded near Ashdod while enjoying a break from his military duties in Gaza.

Written by: United with Israel Staff