The funeral of murdered journalist Steven Sotloff is to take place in South Florida Friday afternoon. The Jewish service comes three days after a video showing the beheading of Sotloff, 31, was released by Islamic State militants. The funeral, open to the public and led by Rabbi Terry Bookman, will take place at Temple Beth Am in the Miami suburb of Pinecrest, Sotloff’s hometown, the AP is reporting.
Sotloff attended Temple Beth Am's Hebrew school as a child. His mother, Shirley Sotloff, who previously pleaded with militants to spare her son’s life, works at there as a preschool teacher.
Islamic State militants, also known as ISIS, released Tuesday a two-minute video of Sotloff’s beheading, which was confirmed by the U.S. government. The masked militant responsible for Sotloff’s murder said his death was the result of President Barack Obama’s airstrikes on the Islamic State in northern Iraq. Obama called the beheading “barbaric.”
Sotloff’s death comes two weeks after the beheading of fellow American freelance journalist James Foley. Like Sotloff, Foley was beheaded on video by the Islamic militants. In the video, posted Aug. 19, a masked militant threatened Sotloff would be ISIS’s next victim.
Foley was honored in a hometown memorial in Rochester, New Hampshire, last month.
Sotloff was first reported missing in Syria in August 2013. He was writing about the Syrian civil war as a freelancer for several publications when he was kidnapped.