On Yom HaShoah, DRS had the privilege to hear from Shimon Felder, a survivor of Bergen-Belsen and grandfather of DRS Junior Jesse Felder. Felder delivered a powerful message of Emunah in Hashem, and how he managed to stay strong throughout the horrors he experienced in his lifetime.
After the speech, junior Sruli Fruchter presented “In Living Memory,” a journal in tribute to victims of the Holocaust, including articles recording the accounts of the relatives of DRS students.
Below is an article by Sruli Fruchter, describing why he decided to put the publication together:
We say “Never forget.” Never forget the families that were destroyed. Never forget the six million Jews who were murdered by the Nazis. Never forget the Shoah. Seventy-two years after the Shoah ended, we must continue to do just that.
In honor of Yom HaShoah, observed April 24, I decided to launch the first-ever DRS Holocaust Journal, In Living Memory. As founder and editor-in-chief, I wanted to offer students the chance to honor those they knew who suffered this tragic, inhumane time. Some victims of the Holocaust had to watch as their families were torn before their eyes, their loved-ones taken, never to be seen again. Others were fortunate enough to escape before the war began. The horrors and tragedies endured by each and every European Jew, at the time of the Shoah, are intangible to us in today’s day and age; honoring and sharing the stories of these great people was something I thought could be achieved through a Holocaust Journal.
As the grandson of two Holocaust survivors, I often think about the responsibility we face as their future generation. To ensure their memory remains eternal is incumbent upon us all.
The DRS Holocaust Journal utilizes art, memoirs, and personal dedications to commemorate the lives and stories of true inspirations. Some students wrote memoirs about their relatives or people they knew in the Holocaust, while others wrote poems or produced original artwork. With the help of our generous sponsors, we have been fortunate to distribute one journal to every single student, faculty member, and administrator in DRS, on Yom HaShoah.
On the cover of the Holocaust Journal, I drew a single Jew standing in front of Auschwitz, cloaked in Israel’s flag. As he looks out at the gates of hell, where more than a million Jews were murdered, he remembers; he remembers the mothers, the fathers, the brothers, the sisters, and the victims whose lives were cut short because of a deeply-rooted hatred for the Jewish people. He is wrapped in Israel’s flag to represent the security that Jews have today, because of their homeland. In essence, this image tells the victims that their anguish and tribulations were not endured in vain, as the Holocaust would have never happened if we had a Jewish homeland. It is now assured that it will never happen again.
For the past two months, I, along with the faculty adviser, Rabbi Eli Brazil; literary adviser, Robin Schick; and my fellow editors, Jacob Appel (’18), Uri Ash (’18), Benyamin Bortz (’18), Dovi Schlossberg (’17), and Akiva Thalheim (’17), worked to ensure that In Living Memory fit our vision and accomplish its goal of honoring each and every victim of the Shoah in the journal.
After considering various titles for the journal, we chose In Living Memory as it goes hand-in-hand with our theme: whether they have passed or survived, the victims of the Shoah will remain immortal through their memory. The Nazis tried to exterminate the Jewish people, but we will never allow their mission to become a reality.
We will keep each and every victim of the Shoah alive, In Living Memory.