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West Hartford 27-Year-Old Killed In Israel Terrorist Attack

A 27-year-old Connecticut man who graduated from a university in New York was killed in a terrorist attack in Israel. 

West Hartford native and Columbia University graduate Elan Ganeles.
West Hartford native and Columbia University graduate Elan Ganeles. Photo Credit: Linkedin/Elan Ganeles

Elan Ganeles, who grew up in West Hartford and attended the Hebrew High School of New England, died in an attack in near Jericho in the West Bank Monday night, Feb. 27, according to US Ambassador to Israel Tom Nides.

Ganeles' death was announced by his synagogue, Young Israel of West Hartford, which called the attack "brutal" in an email sent to congregants. 

Ganeles was a sergeant in the Israel Defense Forces from July 2016 to August 2018, working as a computer programmer, his LinkedIn page shows. Ganeles later would go on to graduate from Columbia University, earning a Bachelor's Degree in Sustainable Development and Neuroscience.

After graduating, he then worked for the Israel-based company INNONATION as a business development analyst, where he would meet with Chinese investors to establish interest in new business relationships with Israeli technology companies among other duties, his LinkedIn says.

Ganeles had been working as a geospatial analyst for Columbia University's Center for International Earth Science Information Network at the time of his death.

Simon Lichter, the founder of Urban Dor, a social nonprofit for Jewish professionals ages 21 to 39, commented on Ganeles' death, calling the news of his murder "terrible."

"Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and our community here in West Hartford," Lichter said. 

Ganeles is survived by his parents, Carolyn and Andrew Ganeles; his brothers, Simon (Gila) Ganeles and Gabriel Ganeles; his grandparents, Aaron and Regina Rand; his uncle, Miriam Silberman; and cousin, Brian Silberman. 

The synagogue announced that his funeral would be held in Israel and that his family would return to West Hartford to sit shiva. 

"May the Almighty comfort the extended Ganeles and Rand families among the mourners of Zion and Jerusalem," the synagogue said in their announcement of Ganeles' death. 

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