Almog Meir Jan: Father of Israeli Hostage Died of Grief' Just Hours Before His Son Was Rescued by IDF in 'Complex' Daytime Operation

"Yossi, my brother, Almog's father, was glued to the television for the whole eight months, clinging to every piece of information," his sister Dina said.

The father of Israeli hostage Almog Meir Jan, 21, "died of grief" hours before his son was rescued. As Almog was evacuated following the operation on Saturday, the Israel Defense Forces tried to reach his father, Yossi, 59, to share the good news. When he didn't answer, they called his sister, Dina Jan, who hurried over to his home in Kfar Saba, central Israel.

Israeli military said they rescued hostages Almog Meir Jan, Andri Kozlov, 27, and Shlomi Ziv, 41, from the family home of a journalist who had kept them hostage. The hostages were rescued during a "complex" operation at two locations in Nuseirat, central Gaza, the IDF said.

Will Never See His Father Again

Almog Meir Jan
Almog Meir Jan being hugged by a family member after his release X

Almog has reunited with his family but will never get to see his father. His father's body was taken to a nearby hospital. Shortly afterward, Almog arrived at the same hospital following his rescue.

"My brother died of grief and didn't get to see his son return. The night before Almog's return, my brother's heart stopped," Almog's aunt Dina Jan told the Kan public broadcaster Sunday.

"We are very happy about Almog's return, but the brain is unable to absorb that this is the end. We are broken," she said, explaining that her brother lived alone in Kfar Saba.

"Yossi, my brother, Almog's father, was glued to the television for the whole eight months, clinging to every piece of information," she said.

"He loved Almog so much, cared for him so much, wanted to know what was happening to him and what he was going through. He could not bear it, every [potential hostage deal] that exploded in his face broke his heart," she said.

"He lost 20 kilos, he couldn't bear it in any way," she said. "He closed himself off, didn't want to see people. Everyone was worried about Yossi, but he wasn't able to communicate with anyone."

Mixed Emotions

Almog Meir Jan
Almog Meir Jan with his father before he was kidnapped by Hamas terrorists on Oct 7, 2023 X

Dina said she received a phone call from the army informing her that her nephew had been rescued. The officer also mentioned that they had been unable to reach Yossi. "I was so happy I didn't know what to do," she told Kan, adding that she went to her brother's home to share the good news.

"I knocked, 'Yossi, Yossi, Yossi', and nothing," Dina told Israel's Kan News.

"I got no answer. The door of his house was open and I saw him sleeping in the living room... I touched him, but he was dead."

Speaking to Army Radio, Orit Meir, Almog's mother, said that her son was doing alright, but there was "a road ahead" to his full recovery.

She said that her son's captors had kept him somewhat updated on current events. He was aware of the weekly demonstrations calling for the release of hostages, as well as debates over drafting ultra-Orthodox men into the military.