Nechama Rivlin, the wife of Israeli President Reuven Rivlin, passed away Tuesday morning just one day before her 74th birthday, on June 5.
The First Lady underwent a lung transplant on March 11, 2019, to treat pulmonary fibrosis.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gave his condolences to the Rivlin family.
“Together with all the citizens of Israel, my wife Sara and I express deep sorrow for the passing of the wife of the president, Nechama Rivlin,” Netanyahu said.
“We all prayed for her healing during the last period in which she fought bravely and intensely for her life. We extend our heartfelt condolences to the president and to all his family. May her memory be blessed. “
The Rivlin family thanks the staff at Beilinson Hospital for working hard to treat her lung disease. the family also thank the citizens of Israel for praying for her health.
Rivlin was born in Moshav Herut in 1945. Her parents, Drora (Keila) and Mendy Shulman, immigrated from Ukraine and helped found the moshav.
She earned a BSc in Botany and Zoology, along with a Teaching Diploma from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In 1967, she became a researcher at Hebrew University.
She worked in the Departments of Zoology, Ecology, and Genetics until retiring in 2007.
In 1971 she married Reuven Rivlin. The couple has three children – Rivi (Rivka), Anat and Ran.
She was a grandmother to Matan, Ziv, Shai, Karni, Maya, Daniela and Yahav, and sister to Varda.
During her role as Israel’s First Lady, she worked to promote women’s rights, children, education, and environmental issues. She also worked to reconcile Jewish and Arab students and teachers together through the Hand in Hand: Center for Jewish-Arab Education in Israel.