Mohamed Farraj

Death waits for no one in Balata refugee camp

Skipper, the son of an electrician, grew up with his three brothers on the outskirts of the camp. Though his given name was Osama, most people in the camp called him “Skipper” and his close friends called him “Disco Skipper.” “Skipper” was a nickname given to him in school, and “Disco” came from his love for dancing. Skipper would be the first one dancing at all the wedding parties in the camp. Like many of his peers, in tenth grade Skipper left school to work for his father. However, he couldn’t stand working while the situation around him was worsening and his friends were being killed or arrested. His friend Ramzy says that Skipper would hang out with young men who were “wanted” by the Israeli army. Skipper was considered guilty by association and he too became “wanted.”