Wed. Apr 17th, 2024
alert-–-american-world-central-kitchen-worker-killed-in-gaza-by-idf-airstrike-is-seen-in-heartbreaking-pictures-with-his-wife-and-baby-boy-–-as-gofundme-is-launched-to-bring-back-his-body-and-create-trust-fund-for-his-childAlert – American World Central Kitchen worker killed in Gaza by IDF airstrike is seen in heartbreaking pictures with his wife and baby boy – as GoFundMe is launched to bring back his body and create trust fund for his child

The family of the American-Canadian charity worker killed in an IDF airstrike in Gaza has shared a picture of him with his wife and baby boy.

Jacob Flickinger, 33, was one of seven charity workers killed by an IDF strike as he and his colleagues from the World Central Kitchen worked to distribute aid to Palestinians.

They were in a convoy of three cars Monday night when hellfire missiles struck their vehicles. 

‘Jacob had been volunteering in Gaza since early March helping distribute food to Palestinians,’ Flockinger’s family wrote on a GoFundMe page created to collect funds for funeral arrangements and a trust fund for his son. 

‘Before then, he dedicated his time to World Central Kitchen, also doing a mission in Mexico. He leaves behind his partner Sandy and his one year old baby boy.’

Jacob Flickinger, 33, was one of seven charity workers killed by an IDF strike in Gaza. He is seen with his wife Sandy and his one-year-old son

Jacob Flickinger, 33, was one of seven charity workers killed by an IDF strike in Gaza. He is seen with his wife Sandy and his one-year-old son 

The incident has sparked international outrage. Flickinger is pictured above.

The incident has sparked international outrage. Flickinger is pictured above. 

The team from the charity and their Palestinian driver were killed in central Gaza’s Deir al-Balah when their vehicle (pictured) was struck on Monday, local media reported, after the group helped deliver food and other supplies to the region

In a statement, World Central Kitchen named Flickinger as one of seven 'beautiful souls' killed during the attack

In a statement, World Central Kitchen named Flickinger as one of seven ‘beautiful souls’ killed during the attack 

The incident has sparked international outrage and has heaped more pressure on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over his response to the October 7 terror attacks, which killed some 1,200 Israelis and resulted in more than 30,000 Gazans perishing in retaliatory strikes.

In a statement, World Central Kitchen named Flickinger as one of seven ‘beautiful souls’ killed during the attack.

President Joe Biden also released a statement in the aftermath of the attack, saying: ‘I am outraged and heartbroken by the deaths of seven humanitarian workers from World Central Kitchen, including one American, in Gaza yesterday.

‘They were providing food to hungry civilians in the middle of a war. They were brave and selfless. Their deaths are a tragedy.’

World Central Kitchen officials identified the seven victims of the attack and blasted Israel for hitting the aid group.

‘These are the heroes of World Central Kitchen,’ World Central Kitchen CEO Erin Gore said in a statement Tuesday.

‘These 7 beautiful souls were killed by the IDF in a strike as they were returning from a full day’s mission.’

In a statement, WC Kitchen named Flickinger as one of seven 'beautiful souls' killed during the attack

In a statement, WC Kitchen named Flickinger as one of seven ‘beautiful souls’ killed during the attack

A destroyed car displaying the charity’s logo is seen from above on Tuesday. The convoy was targeted by R9X Hellfire missiles

Celebrity chef José Andrés (pictured), the founder of the charity, said: 'Today WCKitchen lost several of our sisters and brothers in an IDF air strike in Gaza. I am heartbroken and grieving for their families and friends and our whole WCK family'

Celebrity chef José Andrés (pictured), the founder of the charity, said: ‘Today WCKitchen lost several of our sisters and brothers in an IDF air strike in Gaza. I am heartbroken and grieving for their families and friends and our whole WCK family’

‘Their smiles, laughter, and voices are forever embedded in our memories,’ Erin Gore, CEO, said.

‘We are reeling from our loss. The world’s loss,’ he added.

‘This is not only an attack against WCK, this is an attack on humanitarian organizations showing up in the most dire of situations where food is being used as a weapon of war. This is unforgivable.

‘I am heartbroken and appalled that we—World Central Kitchen and the world—lost beautiful lives today because of a targeted attack by the IDF.

‘The love they had for feeding people, the determination they embodied to show that humanity rises above all, and the impact they made in countless lives will forever be remembered and cherished.’

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the IDF had ‘unintentionally [hit] innocent people in the Gaza Strip… it happens in war’.

The WCK said its team had been travelling in a ‘deconflicted’ area at the time. Its vehicles’ roofs were marked with WCK branding.

Secretary of State Anthony Blinken called for an urgent investigation.

‘Humanitarian workers are heroes,’ Blinken said. ‘They show the best of what humanity has to offer. I extend my deepest condolences to those who lost their lives in the strike in Gaza.

‘There must be a swift, thorough, and impartial investigation into this incident.

Flickinger is a dual citizen of the US and Canada who was working as part of the non-profit’s relief team.

He was killed alongside workers from , Poland and the United Kingdom.

Three former British servicemen were among the victims. Former Royal Marines James Henderson and John Chapman and an ex-Army soldier James Kirby died in the drone strike.

They were killed along side Palestinian Saifeddin Issam Ayad Abutaha, 25, Lalzawmi Frankcom, 43, from , and Damian Sobol, 35, from Poland.

The charity workers were ‘leaving the Deir al-Balah warehouse, where the team had unloaded more than 100 tons of humanitarian food aid brought to Gaza on the maritime route’ at the time of the strike.

They had just crossed in from the north after helping deliver aid that had arrived hours earlier on a ship from Cyprus, sources have claimed, and were killed on the Al Rashid Road, which runs parallel to the Mediterranean Sea.

Local Nael Eliyan, living in a tent yards away, sprinted to the wreckage shortly after the precision R9X Hellfire missile slammed into the vehicle.

‘Their injuries were serious and they died quickly,’ he said.

World Central Kitchen workers gather around the bodies of their colleagues after they were transferred to Al-Najjar Hospital in Rafah

World Central Kitchen workers gather around the bodies of their colleagues after they were transferred to Al-Najjar Hospital in Rafah

WCK staff were seen mourning their dead colleagues as their bodies were loaded into an ambulance

WCK staff were seen mourning their dead colleagues as their bodies were loaded into an ambulance

Harrowing pictures showed how a huge hole had been blown in the roof of one car, with its interior torn to shreds. Another vehicle was missing most of its rear end.

The IDF responded to the airstrike deaths, with spokesperson Daniel Hagari saying: ‘Last night, an incident took place in Gaza that resulted in the tragic death of World Central Kitchen employees as they fulfilled their vital mission of bringing food to people in need.

‘As a professional military committed to international law, we are committed to examining our operations thoroughly and transparently. I just spoke to WCK Founder, Chef Jose Anders, and expressed the deepest condolences of the Israel Defense Forces to the families and the entire World Central Kitchen family.

‘We also express sincere sorrow to our allied nations who have been doing and continue to do so much to assist those in need. We have been reviewing the incident at the highest levels to understand the circumstances of what happened and how it happened.

‘We will be opening a probe to examine this serious incident further.’

Yesterday, ships carrying 240 tons of food aid were reported to have turned back from Gaza in the wake of the bombing, adding to the humanitarian crisis in the narrow strip of land.

More than 180 aid workers have been killed in the war, according to the UN.

‘This is nearly three times the death toll recorded in any single conflict in a year,’ Jamie McGoldrick, UN humanitarian coordinator for the Palestinian territories, said.