During the First Lebanon War, a soldier was interviewed by a national newspaper. He metaphorically expressed his fear of falling in battle: “Soon we will become a song, soon we may not be here.” His somber statement later inspired the launch of the radio project Soon We Will Become a Song.

The project is led by the IDF’s Radio Station (Galei Tzahal) and many Israeli musicians. The project pays tribute to fallen soldiers and victims of terror by turning their poems and letters into songs. Their texts have been collected and turned into lyrics ever since 2001, and some date as far back as the establishment of the State of Israel (1948).

The project’s lyrics and musicians’ use of diverse melodies have moved the entire nation — as many of the texts were written by soldiers in their early twenties. Songs such as the three translated below will be broadcasted on radio stations throughout Israel on Yom HaZikaron, Israel’s memorial day for fallen soldiers and victims of terror.

Mom, Dad and Everyone Else

Sgt. Reuven Politi was a soldier in the elite Egoz Unit of the Golani Brigade. He fell at the age of 19. He excelled in sports and in many fields of art. He is survived by his parents, sister, and two brothers.

Nothing Will Hurt Me

First Lt. Erez Shtark served as a battalion-level communications officer in the Northern Command. He was 21 years old when he fell. His interests included sports and reading. He is survived by his parents, brother, and sister.

Send Him Off

Pvt. Binyamin (Benny) Frank, a soldier in the Teleprocessing Corps, was 21 years old when he fell. He decided to draft into the IDF despite being exempt for health reasons. He was a political activist, and wrote many letters and articles. Pvt. Frank is survived by his mother and two sisters.