Baltimore, MD - Nov. 26, 2023 - From their homes, mainly in the US, thousands of young children have joined the Tehillim Army to support the soldiers. Led by Morah Tziri Preis from Baltimore, the Inkredible Kids podcast on November 23rd, sponsored by the Wasserman family, featured a special guest with an inspiring story.
In the IDF reserves, Major Dr. Eitan Turgeman (38) was called up early in Operation Iron Swords and suffered serious injuries. He was evacuated by helicopter to Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital, where he had worked as a dentist before the war. Severely injured, he was admitted with a broken hand, two broken vertebrae in his back, a facial injury, and shrapnel in both legs.
The timing couldn’t have been better for participants from all over the world from this year’s annual Mir Yerushalayim Yarchei Kallah who took time out to perform chesed and had the opportunity to meet soldiers and visit Hadassah Ein Kerem hospital. One of those soldiers was Dr. Turgeman, the oral surgeon, who shared an incredible story with them.
Just before heading into battle, a stack of letters written by children in America was brought in for the soldiers Among the letters, he found one from a girl named Emma Platt, a student at Brauser Maimonides School in South Florida, that deeply touched him. She wrote, "Thank you for fighting for us. I am davening for you. Am Yisrael Chai."
Unfortunately, just a few hours later, he was severely wounded and on the verge of death. In that critical moment, he remembered the letter from Emma Platt, which he had folded and kept in his combat vest. The thought of a little girl, Emma Platt, praying for him gave him the determination to survive. He turned to the visitors and expressed his heartfelt wish to find Emma Platt so that he could properly thank her and meet the girl who had given him strength when he needed it the most.
Immediately, the visitors sprang into action. They recorded a short video of the soldier, appealing to anyone who watched it to help him find Emma Platt. One of the men, Avi Pruzansky of Passaic, NJ, sent the video to his daughter-in-law Leah in Baltimore, who reached out to Morah Tziri Preis and the Tehillim Army for assistance in locating Emma Platt. In moments, people were contacting Platt families all over, desperately trying to locate our girl!
The video quickly went viral, and within an hour, Naomi from Meaningful Minute provided Morah Tziri with the contact information for Emma’s mother, Ronit Platt. She had messaged Meaningful Minute saying she is Emma's mom, in response to the video.
As Morah Tziri was about to start the nightly 6pm InKredible Kids Tehilim call with thousands of kids, she recognized the significance of this moment as a powerful teaching opportunity. She publicly called the Platt family during the Zoom call (with permission), and everyone heard Ronit, Emma's mom, and then Emma herself confirm that she was indeed the Emma Platt the whole world was searching for. The emotional impact of the call spread, and thousands of families across the United States intensified their prayers, wrote more letters to soldiers, and brainstormed ways to help.
For everyone on that Zoom call it was an unforgettable emotional experience. Immediately after the call, Morah Tziri was in touch with David Ganger, who arranged a Zoom meeting the following morning between Dr. Eitan, the soldier, and Emma. The video of their meeting was released on the InKredibleKids YouTube page and garnered thousands of views within hours. (Watch it here).
Baltimore's Rabbi Chaim Gottesman holding Emma's letter at Dr. Eitan's bedside
Reading through the comments on the YouTube page, one can witness the awe and admiration from Jews and non-Jews worldwide for the sincerity and maturity of 11-year-old Emma Platt and the profound impact her actions had.
The most emotional part of this entire journey is watching the sheer joy on Eitan's face as he looks at Emma and says, "Are you Emma Platt?" May we all hear good news for Eretz Yisrael and the Jewish people very, very soon.
Mi K’Amcha Yisrael!
Am Yisrael Chai!
To join the nightly 6pm “TEHILLIM ARMY” and for more information about Morah Tziri’s InKredible Kids, check out the website: https://inkrediblekids.org/tehillim-army.
Listen to the InKredible Kids biweekly podcast wherever you podcast or hear on Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/show/04MxdYEweBa1J9HdY6JxKI?si=47543ffb78064ba9.
Watch Avi Pruzansky tell the story: