South Florida couple discusses harrowing visit to Israel

Ofer and Denise Tamir of Northeast Miami-Dade County describe their experience after just returning from Israel, where they were visiting with family.

MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, Fla. – Ofer and Denise Tamir of Northeast Miami-Dade County spoke to Local 10 News after returning from Israel, where their trip to visit family ran smack into the fighting.

The family was having dinner at a Tel Aviv restaurant when sirens sounded and missiles from Gaza started whistling overhead. Five family members moved quickly to an air-raid shelter.

The family says they had several close calls but escaped unharmed. They say they are sorry for the loss of innocent lives on both sides.

“There are no winners in wars,” Ofer said.

He was born in Israel and is proud of his heritage, but not without sympathy for innocent Palestinians. His wife Denise is an attorney and the daughter of a Holocaust survivor.

“My heart breaks for every innocent person who died,” she said.

Israel and Hamas agreed to a cease-fire Thursday to end the bloody 11-day war.

The fighting caused widespread destruction in the Gaza Strip, and the human toll was high. Twelve Israelis were killed and over 300 were wounded; 260 Palestinians were killed and more than 3,000 were wounded.

The cease-fire is thus far holding, but peace is not in sight.

Watch more of Michael Putney’s interview with Ofer and Denise Tamir at the top of this page.

About the Author:

Michael Putney came to Local 10 in 1989 to become senior political reporter and host of "This Week In South Florida with Michael Putney." He is Local 10's senior political reporter.