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Gillibrand fights to bring home Long Islander taken hostage by Hamas

U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand
Office of Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand
U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) on the Senate floor Tuesday Oct. 24, 2023

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) delivered a speech on the Senate floor Tuesday afternoon highlighting the personal stories of some of the American hostages in Gaza, including one Long Islander.

Omer Neutra, 22, is believed to have been abducted by Hamas on Oct. 7 in Israel along with over 200 other people.

"The grandson of Holocaust survivors, he is an avid athlete and loves the New York Knicks," Gillibrand said about the Plainview native. "He deferred his acceptance to Binghamton University to spend a gap year in Israel before he joined the IDF."

Neutra had been working as a tank commander along the Gaza border according to Gillibrand.

She said she’s working with several families of American citizens, including Neutra’s family on Long Island, to locate the missing and release the hostages.

“My commitment to these families is that we will not give up on them," Gillibrand said. "We will go to the ends of the earth to bring their loved ones home. And my message to the terrorists is: we will not give in.”

Desiree reports on the lives of military service members, veterans, and their families for WSHU as part of the American Homefront project. Born and raised in Connecticut, she now calls Long Island home.