VENTNOR - The Sara and Sam Schoffer Holocaust Resource Center at Stockton University presented the Yom HaShoah service at Beth Judah Congregation here on May 3.
The service was entitled “Unto Every Person There is a Name-Remembering the Six Million Jewish Victims of the Holocaust.” Stories of tragedy and of survival evoked a responsibility for those in attendance to remember the Holocaust and to share the stories of Holocaust survivors.
“We are here to honor the memories of the men, women and children whom the Nazis obsessively murdered merely because they were Jews,” said Rabbi Jonathan Kremer of Beth Judah Congregation in Ventnor. “We are here to remind ourselves, we must remember. We must keep the flame of remembering burning.”
The memorial service included readings by students who are enrolled in Holocaust and Genocide Studies at Stockton University, reflections from children of Holocaust survivors and a keynote address by Inge Fixler of Northfield, a Holocaust survivor. Vioinist Tamara DeMent, accompanied by Joe Handler, performed music from “Schindler’s List,” and the Community Children’s Choir sang “Blessed is the Match.”
Four generations were represented in the Passing of the Legacy during which survivors and their descendants pledged to never forget and to continue to tell others of the tragedies their families have endured.
“The need to memorialize the victims and their suffering arose in Israel and the Jewish world, for except for the absence of time and place, we and they could all have been victims,” said Rabbi Aaron Krauss of Beth El Synagogue in Margate. “The blood of the victims is our blood, their flesh our flesh ... we must add a mitzvah, a commandment, never to be bystanders.”
Alan Staller, who led a Stockton University study trip to the Treblinka and the Belzec death camp memorials and the Majdanek, Auschwitz-Birkenau labor and deaths camps, gave a summary of the trip during the ceremony.
“At the Treblinka memorial, my wife, Billie, picked up a pebble to bring home for our son’s tombstone. She had to leave it there when she learned that it was not a pebble but a piece of the human bones that percolate up through the soil from the mass graves,” he said.
Stockton University undergraduate students with a minor in Holocaust and Genocide and Jewish Studies honored survivors and their families by lighting six candles in memory of the victims of the Shoah. Survivors honored at the ceremony include: Donald Berkman, Bertha Borowick, Hanna Ehrlich, Inge Fixler, Miriam Greenman, Eva Gutman, Adele Jochelson, Nella Juffe, Sonia Kaplan, Ruth Kessler, Helen Gliksman, Cyla Kowenski, Berl Lazarus, Bernd Lewkowitz, Morris Markowski, Laura Oberlender, Claire Perskie, Rella Roth, Betty Simon, Rosalie Simon, Sidney Simon, Rose Steinberg, Sy Techner and Ruth Zinman.