‘She Was My Heaven’: The Tragic End of a Palestinian Love Story

Mohammed Saad's fiancée, Dania Adas, was killed by an Israeli airstrike on May 9. (Photo: WANN, Supplied)

By Lubna Abuhashem and Nada Al-Kahlout

After spending time with his fiancée, Dania Adas, on Monday, Mohammed had to leave as he had work the following morning.  

The 19-year-old Mohammed and Dania, who signed their marriage agreement on March 19, 2023, agreed to have their wedding party on July 21. They could hardly wait to spend the rest of their lives together. 

Dania studied accounting at university. Mohammed helped her, as he gained accounting experience assisting his father in his own accounting work at the family’s sewing workshop. 

Starting at 6 pm, on Monday, May 5, Mohammed and Dania spent their time studying. 

“We were full of life and had a great time,” Mohammed told The Palestine Chronicle. 

But, for the first time, Mohammed had an intuition, a feeling that something wrong would happen to the girl he loves. 

“I told her to promise me she will never leave me as she is the only good thing in my life. I cannot live without her,” he continued.

Mohammed left Dania’s house at 12:40 am. His house was very close to Dania’s.

“I don’t know why, but I didn’t want to leave her. It had never happened before,” he said.

Dania’s 17-year-old sister Eman, however, was one of the reasons that Mohammed left. The younger sister was eager to tell Dania about an exciting day she had at school. 

Death of Two Sisters 

While Dania and Eman were sleeping next to each other in their shared room, the Israeli warplanes bombed the house of Khalil Al-Bahtini, a senior commander of the Al-Quds Bridges, killing him, his wife,  and his 5-year-old daughter, Hajar. 

Eman’s and Dania’s room was adjacent to Al-Bahtini’s house. The roof fell on top of them; shrapnel flew everywhere. 

Dania died instantly. She was injured in the head. Her pillow was soaked with blood. Emma, though also injured in the head, survived the initial blast. She was moved to the hospital where she underwent surgery, only to die a few hours later.    

“Dania and Eman were soulmates. They used to care a lot about each other. And now they were martyred together,” Mohammed told the Palestine Chronicle, his voice broken and his eyes full of tears. 

Dania’s father called Mohammed’s father, Sameh, at 2:00 am telling him that Dania was at Al-Shifa Hospital. Mohammed’s family rushed to the hospital. 

“When the nurse told him that her body was already in the cooler, at the morgue, Mohammed fainted,” Sameh said.

 The following day, Dania’s family and friends prayed Al-Janaza prayer, the Islamic funeral prayer, at Al-Omari mosque, in Gaza’s old city.. 

Mohammed read Yasin Quranic verses while caressing her head and crying, inconsolably.

“She was a very kind person. Why did they kill her?” he asked.

He still cannot cope with her loss.

“Whenever I was sad, she used to cheer me up, but now she is not here to do it,” Mohammed said after hugging a mourner at her funeral.  

Mohammed liked to obey Dania in her every desire. Her desires, however, were quite simple and innocent. 

“I had promised her to buy her a new iPhone and to put it in a small red box because she liked the red color,” he told us. 

For their wedding party, she wanted him to book a chalet for three days so that they could spend their honeymoon there. Mohammed booked the Al-Shorouq chalet, a popular party location in the besieged Gaza Strip. 

After graduation, her dream was to work in a bank.

“She was over the moon because she got a full mark in her midterm exam, and I shared that joy with her,” Mohammed remembered.

“She loved me unconditionally. She loved me when I was in a bad mood or even bad-tempered. She was an angel. She was my heaven,” he said.  

“I wonder why they inflicted me with such pain, by depriving me of her. We are not terrorists, we are human beings.”

(This article was contributed to The Palestine Chronicle by We Are Not Numbers)

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