World mourns as kidnapped Israeli teens are laid to rest

Posted at 6:46 PM, Jul 01, 2014
and last updated 2014-07-01 18:46:10-04

NEW YORK (PIX11) -- It was a national day of mourning in Israel.

There was a massive crowd at the three teen's joint funeral that included Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The three bodies were wrapped in Israeli flags as they were laid to rest.

"The whole nation prayed for the boys to come home, and the whole nation saw the nobility of spirit," said Netanyahu.

On Monday, the boys were reportedly found in a shallow grave in the West Bank in an open field.

Authorities had been searching for 19-year-old Eyal Yifrach, 16-year-old Gilad Shaar, and Naftali Frenkel, a 16-year-old with dual Israeli-American citizenship. The search lasted more than two weeks.

New Yorkers are mourning for the teesN, as well as demanding answers.

"I think it's unbelievable what happened," said Marilyn Bellock. "I'm certainly curious. I feel very very terrible for their parents."

For more than two weeks, the world held out hope for these boys. Our hearts were all broken when word spread that their bodies were found, and that they had apparently been shot. The boys were reportedly hitchhiking home when they were kidnapped.

At a Memorial Service Monday night, outside the Israeli Consulate on the East Side of Manhattan, dozens who did not know the teens attended and mourned them. The large crowd then walked to the U.N. They were calling for peace, and for justice.

The mourners carried flags and heavy hearts.

Israel has blamed members of Hamas for the killing, but Hamas has not claimed responsibility.

Israel stepped up airstrikes on Gaza following the findings.

Frenkel was reportedly a big basketball fan, and played the guitar and other instruments. He had family in Brooklyn.

On Tuesday night, another Memorial Service is scheduled at The Jewish Center on 86th Street on the Upper West Side at 7:30 p.m.Elected officials and other mourners were expected to attend.

As for suspects, the West Bank homes of the two prime suspects were destroyed.

An emergency cabinet meeting was called in Israel on Monday.