In a lamentable turn of events, Awni Eldous, a 13-year-old aspiring content creator from Gaza, met an untimely demise during an Israeli air assault. Prior to this tragedy, Eldous fervently aimed to cultivate a substantial audience on his YouTube channel. Posthumously, the collective efforts of compassionate individuals materialized his dream of achieving one million subscribers, now standing at 1.49 million.
In August of the preceding year, Eldous, renowned for his ardor for computers and gaming, conveyed gratitude to his initial 1,000 subscribers while elucidating his grand aspiration. “I am Awni Eldous, a Palestinian hailing from Gaza. At the tender age of 12,” he articulated in the video, outlining his channel’s progression from 100,000 to 500,000, and ultimately aspiring to attain 10 million subscribers, all contingent on the support and affection of his viewers.
Concluding the concise video, he bid farewell with a casual “peace out” to his initial 1,000 subscribers before fading from view. The comments section subsequently overflowed with poignant condolences and remorse from users who lamented not contributing to Eldous’s aspirations during his lifetime.
Tragically, Awni’s familial abode succumbed to an Israeli strike on October 7, as reported by the BBC. Descriptions from Awni’s relatives painted a picture of him as a cheerful, self-assured, and benevolent youngster, affectionately referred to as “engineer Awni” for his affinity for computers.
For many, this 13-year-old gamer transformed into a poignant symbol, emblematic of the countless children lost in the Gaza Strip. Eldous’s uncle, Mohammed, recounted the sudden devastation: “Two bombs fell unexpectedly on the edifice, obliterating it. My spouse and I narrowly escaped as we were situated on the top floor.” Both he and a neighbor emphasized the absence of any forewarning, recalling the abruptness with a succinct “boom.”
Eldous’s aunt, grappling with disbelief, recounted the moment she received distressing messages. Connecting to Wi-Fi, she discovered a social media post from a close family friend featuring a photo of her brother captioned with “Rest in peace.” Rushing to the hospital, she declined the request to view the bodies, as her husband desired to preserve memories of their vitality.
Ala’a, Eldous’s relative, disclosed that 15 family members, including Awni, perished that fateful night. She portrayed him as a serene and helpful boy, inheriting his father’s penchant for computer engineering. Awni, from a young age, emulated his father’s actions, disassembling and reassembling laptops, as recounted by the BBC.
Since the eruption of the Israel-Hamas conflict in early October, over 10,000 lives have been claimed in Gaza, with a staggering 4,000 of them being children, underscoring the profound human toll of the ongoing strife.