Ya’acov, son of Dov and Miryam was born June 3, 1926 in Horochov Ukraine. His father was an ardent Zionist, working in commerce and industry, who served as Chairman of the Revisionist Zionism Movement in the area. He was also chairman of Horochov’s ‘Tarbut’ Jewish institution.
Ya’acov joined Beitar aged 12. He graduated from the ‘Tarbut’ Elementary School and afterwards ‘Tarbut’ High School in Luzk. After the Russian occupation 1940 his studies were discontinued. During the German occupation IN 1941-42, he stayed with his parents in the Ghetto, and escaped two days before it was closed for its ruthless liquidation. After the region’s liberation by the Soviet Army 1944, he volunteered to fight the Ukrainian national movement which was helping the Germans assassinate the Jews. Ya’acov was among the founders of Russia’s ‘Escape’ movement. Following the liberation of Lodz Poland, he was among the founders of the Beitar and the Etzel movements. He organized the ‘Escape’ movement and represented it. In 1946 he contacted Lehi representatives abroad and joined the activities. He came to Israel beginning of 1947, joined Lehi immediately, and received the name Dov. He worked with Anshel Spielman in preparing Lehi men to integrate into the IDF. He joined the 8th Brigade with the other Lehi men. End of 1948 he was made commander of Haifa Air Force Base. In 1950 he was discharged as Division Commander ranking Major. In 1951 he married Kenda Greenberg, a Lehi member (‘Pnina’). They have three children: Rivka, Dov and Shulamit, and seven grandchildren. Ya’acov Hebraized his name to Bar-Gera. In 1963 he was sent by the State to Germany. Between the years 1976-1980 he served as the president of KAL airline Europe. After his retirement, he’s researched and collected, with his wife, forbidden Russian works of art (1955-1988). They edited two books on the subject: ‘The Russian Non-Conformists’ and ‘The Second Russian Avant-Garde’. He also wrote his autobiography, titled ‘Six Times Liberated’.