(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)

Acting Prime Minister Ehud Olmert met this afternoon (Sunday), 29 January 2006, with Rona Ramon on the third anniversary of the death of her husband Ilan. 
Members of the McCool, Clark and Brown families, who also lost loved ones in the Columbia disaster, attended the meeting. NASA astronaut and former space shuttle Discovery commander Col. (USAF, ret.) Eileen Collins and two other astronauts also attended the meeting and gave Acting Prime Minister Olmert a photograph that was taken during their flight in space.

Acting Prime Minister Olmert said, "The memory of Ilan Ramon is in every Israeli’s heart. He was a source of pride to Israel. The entire country followed the preparations and I remember well the excitement we all felt when Ilan talked about Jerusalem while in space." The Acting Prime Minister noted that he had recently visited Ilan Ramon’s grave in Nahalal and was pleased to see that many citizens visit his grave because they remember Ilan Ramon very well and how much he contributed to the State of Israel.

Rona Ramon  gave Acting Prime Minister a book about the 1981 bombing of the Iraqi nuclear reactor in which Ilan took part.