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American executive inspired by resilience and solidarity of Israel’s people during wartime visit

Clem Boyd recently traveled to Israel in support of MDA, the national emergency medical system

American public relations executive Clem Boyd in Jerusalem's Old City (Photo courtesy Infinity Concepts)

Ever since the war that ensued following the Oct. 7 Hamas attacks, regular tourism in Israel has been severely curtailed: Commercial flights into and out of Israel are currently only being operated by El Al Airlines and few visitors not connected to relief efforts are currently traveling to the Epicenter.

Of course, high-profile Evangelists like Franklin Graham of Samaritan’s Purse have arrived with humanitarian aid, and this past week a delegation led by former U.S. presidential candidate Mike Huckabee and former U.S. senator Sam Brownback toured war-torn areas. 

One of the relatively few “civilian” visitors in December was Clem Boyd, an executive with Infinity Concepts, a Christian marketing agency based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. As director of public relations, he works with several clients whose mission is to help grow their ministries through adhering to a biblical worldview in their marketing and fundraising.

As part of a Solidarity Mission with the group American Friends of Magen David Adom, Boyd recently traveled to Israel in support of MDA, national emergency medical services, and found himself face-to-face with the aftermath of Hamas’ carnage.

American public relations executive Clem Boyd pictured with a Magen David Adom bloodmobile in Haifa. (Photo courtesy Infinity Concepts)

“As you can imagine, my wife and I prayed in advance of our journey to Israel,” he told me. “After all, traveling to a war zone is not something one approaches lightly.” However, the opportunity to meet with paramedics and EMTs who risked their lives to save others in the line of fire gave Boyd a calm as he flew to Tel Aviv.

In an interview with ALL ISRAEL NEWS, Boyd told me that throughout his journey, he was comforted by the verse from Deuteronomy 31:6 which counsels to: "Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you or forsake you."

"It was a moment of divine reassurance, and I felt a profound sense of peace,” he added.

“During this mission, I witnessed the resilience and courage of the people in Kibbutz Be’eri, a communal town in southern Israel located just a mile east of Gaza,” Boyd explained. “Despite suffering the loss of 90 residents out of 1,200, the community showed unwavering determination.” 

By the time, this Solidarity Mission reached Be’eri, the Israel Defense Forces had restored order, bringing security and stability back to the kibbutz. The residents said they look forward to rebuilding and re-establishing their lives in this graceful village, choosing to focus on the future with fortitude and resolve. 

Boyd says his group was guided by Lotan Pinyan, a resident of Be’eri who mused: “Be’eri had to be this close to Gaza because otherwise, it would be just too good.” Lotan, his wife, and children survived the Oct. 7 onslaught. Sadly, his in-laws, who also lived in the kibbutz, were found dead together – victims of the terrible attack.

“We also paid our respects outside the dental clinic where MDA paramedic Amit Mann had worked tirelessly to care for her fellow villagers. Even though she had been shot amid gunfire, Amit wrapped a tourniquet around her leg to stop the bleeding as she continued to persevere to save others. Eventually, Hamas terrorists forced their way into the clinic, and she was killed at point-blank range. Her heroic efforts, even in the face of grave danger, were a testament to the indomitable spirit of the Israeli people.”

Strength. Optimism. Indomitable spirit. Resolve. These words honeycombed our conversation, as Clem Boyd shared story after story of how impressive Israel remains, even in wartime. 

“The thing that continually impressed me during the trip,” he added, “was just the determination exhibited by everyone I met. They are not naïve about the serious situation facing Israel daily, but they’re also set on carrying out their lives with inspiring normalcy. You hear it in their voices. They have hope. I guess I want to emphasize that too.”  

Boyd marveled that when he was in Haifa, the streets were full despite the real threats from both Hamas missiles and attacks from Hezbollah. People were living their lives. Cars were traveling on the roads. It was a regular, gorgeous day in Haifa. It would have been a great day to go to the beach in Haifa. It was just a beautiful, beautiful place and I wish we could have spent more time there.” 

During an outdoor lunch at the MDA’s station in Sderot, amid the sounds of artillery fire, Solidarity Mission members experienced stark reminders of the challenges Israel endures. “But even in the face of military adversity, the people of Israel remain resilient and united,” Boyd noted.

Now back in the United States in time to celebrate Christmas, Boyd said he and other tour members will always remember one striking example of Israeli optimism despite the current dark days. 

“Rambam Hospital in Haifa was built with three stories underground in anticipation of such an apocalyptic scenario, ready to care for 2,200 patients in fully functional subterranean clinical facilities. Before we wrapped up our tour, the president of the hospital showed us a video…and it was their game plan for advancing the hospital to even greater things in the year 2065. Talk about hope!”

Tom is a contributing editor for ALL ISRAEL NEWS. He has long served as vice president of News & Talk Programming for the Salem Radio Network and SRN News, the #1 Christian radio news network in the United States.

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