Former NBA player Dusty Hannahs has detailed the terrifying experience he’s had in Israel, as Hamas militants attacked the country over the weekend.
Hannahs has played for the Grizzlies and in the NBA G League and made his Israel League debut on Friday night for the Ironi Ness Ziona, just hours before Hamas’ unprecedented assault.
He described the experience of waking up to sirens on Saturday as Hamas started to launch missiles from the Gaza Strip.
The 30-year-old heard large booms, likely coming from the Iron Dome defense system shooting down Hamas rockets.
“It’s pretty insane, but you can still feel the shaking of the impact in the sky, especially if it gets low,” Hannahs said on Sirus XM NBA Radio. “I could kind of feel my room shake, so I ran to the bomb shelter on my floor. As a kid from Arkansas, it was all pretty foreign to me. The room was shaking and it kind of just went on all day.”
The Ironi Ness Ziona team manager sent a message to the team and told them to pack a bag for the airport.
Hannahs and his team made it safely to the airport, where they found out a missile had struck the city of Bat Yam where they were living.
“I’m reading it like, ‘Wow I just got out in time,’” Hannahs said.
But he wasn’t safe yet, and revealed a terrifying realisation as he was sitting there.
“As I look up everyone in the airport is sprinting to a shelter,” Hannahs continued. “As an American, my first thought was there’s gunman. Like someone got in the building or something and then I heard giant booms. And they were shooting missiles at the airport while we were there trying to get out.”
Hannahs got out of the country safely and is now in Greece, awaiting to hear about what will be become of the rest of Israel League’s season.
The death toll from the attacks his risen to over 900 people, tragically, most are civilians.
Another 2,150 people have been reported to be injured.