Video: https://www.dropbox.com/s/29yq90697jg3501/VRP33906.mp4?dl=0 (Footage shows the moment dead Thai worker Sikharin Sa-ngamram was found followed by his grieving wife)
The devastated wife of a Thai worker killed in the Israel-Palestine conflict has described the harrowing moment she was on a video call with him when he was hit by a rocket blast.
Orathai Krongmarerng, 21, was speaking with her husband Sikharin Sa-ngamram, 23, from her house in Buriram province, Thailand, as he ran to a bunker on May 18.
She was watching as her worried husband fled the blasts – remembering his heavy footsteps – when there was a sudden loud explosion that echoed from her speaker.
Orathai said she watched as her partner fell to the ground then screamed in agony and gurgled blood after being hit by debris from the bomb in Eshkol, Israel.
The widowed mother-of-two said: ‘I was video calling him when there was an explosion and he started running away. I stayed on the call and I could hear his footsteps.
‘There was another loud blast and he fell down. I could hear him making noises like he was in pain but I couldn’t see anything.’
Orathai stayed on the call screaming her husband’s name – without any reply – before one of Sikharin’s colleagues dragged him into a bunker. He picked up the phone and told her to ‘stay calm’ before the connection was lost as they went underground.
Footage from one of Sikharin’s colleagues shows the moment he was found dead. His wife watched the video back while describing her last moments with him.
Orathai said that a few days before the tragedy, her husband had told her about a dream in which he returned to his family – a superstition in Thai culture that he was about to die.
Speaking from her home in Nonthaburi, said: ‘I am heartbroken, I don’t know what to do. We had so many future plans together which were ruined when he died.’
Orathai added that her husband went to Israel in April and had just been working for a few days when the incident happened.
She said he was also the breadwinner – moving to Israel so he could send money back to Thailand to support her and their two young children.
She said: ‘He had only been working at this place for a few days. We have two children, a four-year-old boy and a two-year-old daughter waiting for their father but now they only have me.
‘I just want my husband back so he can see his children grow up.’
The Thai government initially provided 40,000 baht for the funeral and another 50,000 baht from the social security office to support the family while the Israeli government promised to help her financially.
Orathai said she will now receive 36,000 baht per month until she remarries while her children will receive up to 12,000 baht each per month until they turn 18-years-old.
The two sides in the decades-old Israel Palestine conflict agreed on a ceasefire on Thursday (May 20) following 11 days of rockets being fired from both sides.