Remember: Aging survivors mark Yom Hashoah with memories, tears and strength


Monday evening’s Greater Five Towns Community Yom Hashoah Memorial Service for the Six Million, at Beth Sholom in Lawrence, featured a keynote address by survivor Esia Friedman. The evening opened with music by the HALB fifth grade choir and featured the lighting of six yahrzeit candles.

In introducing Friedman, Tahra Mastour urged that we “recognize the antisemism of today for what it is so that we remain vigilant and stand up against intolerance and Jew-hatred in all of its forms — for the victims of the past, for the survivors that we see in our present, and for the children of our future.”

Sharon Fogel, event co-chair with Nathaniel Rogoff, read a synopsis of the long and challenging lives of each of the survivors who would light a yahrzeit candle. Frida Parnes “remembers Nazis coming to her town, burning their shul and killing the rabbi.” Regina Goodman raised five children — and has 14 grandchildren and 27 great grandchildren.

Fogel’s been interviewing survivors for over 10 years. “They are priceless and I treasure each one,” she said. “We have lost so many this year alone.”