JERUSALEM—Gennady Kaufman, a soft-spoken gardener at Me’arat Hamachpelah (the Cave of the Patriarchs) died today and was laid to rest in the ancient Jewish cemetery in Hebron, three weeks after being stabbed in the heart by a terrorist just outside the holy site.

Kaufman, 41, was on his way home to the nearby community of Kiryat Arba from his work on the holy site’s grounds on Dec. 7 when he was attacked by a Palestinian assailant. Kaufman underwent emergency surgery at Shaarei Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem and fought for his life for more than three weeks before succumbing to his wounds. The terrorist was shot and killed by security forces at the scene.

An immigrant from the former Soviet Union, Kaufman was described by friends as a gentle man devoted to his family and his work, and enjoyed talking to and praying with visitors from around the world at Me’arat Hamachpelah.

Kaufman is the 21st person to be killed in a series of terror attacks in Israel that began in October. Scores of others have been injured.

He is survived by his wife, Lorinka, and two children: David, 19, who serves in the Israeli Navy, and Michal, 9.