May 28, 2024
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The Shefa School Hosts Holocaust Survivor Aron Krell

On Yom HaShoah v’HaGevura, Holocaust Remembrance Day, the Shefa School commemorated the significant moment in history and tremendous loss of life that was the Holocaust. Throughout the day, students visited the Ulam Hazichronot, Hall of Memories. This year, the room included candles with the names of victims, a slideshow and music showing Jewish life before, during and after the War, and a Wall of Eternal Flames, which featured names of victims and survivors related to members of the Shefa community. In addition, there was a section dedicated to the Righteous Among the Nations, non-Jews who risked everything to help Jewish people during the Shoah. At the end of the day, the community came together for a tekes, ceremony. Eighth graders whose families were directly impacted by the horrors of the Holocaust recited names of their family members who were killed during the Shoah before lighting candles on behalf of the community.

The Shefa School also welcomed Holocaust survivor Aron Krell to address the fifth through eighth grades, emphasizing the significance of honoring the victims of the Holocaust and safeguarding their memories. Through Aron’s touching narrative of his life before the war, the four years he spent in the Łódź Ghetto, surviving Auschwitz-Birkenau, Sachsenhausen and Mauthausen concentration and labor camps, and eventually being placed in a displaced persons camp, the students gained insight into his life and experiences. They were reminded that the Shoah is not only a solemn occasion but also an opportunity to honor and celebrate the lives of their ancestors and all Jewish people.  Near the end of his presentation, Aron highlighted why he tells his story. He said, “I will never forget and I will never forgive. But life has to go on and it is very important for all of you to try and remember; and when you have children, to tell them the whole story. We have to remember what happened to the rest of the Jews.” He also very importantly added that “…but I do not hate because a person filled with hate cannot be a whole person and enjoy life to the fullest.”

It was an exceptionally meaningful day. Thank you to Mr. Krell for sharing your story and the reminder that we must never forget.

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