Category: Entertainment

Presentation Description

Elly Kleinman is the President of the KFHEC, and is the driving force behind it, as evidenced by the fact that it bears his family's name. He is the President and CEO of The Americare Companies, which provide a full-service range of healthcare services, including home healthcare and rehabilitation services and international nurse recruitment, encompassing professional, paraprofessional and ancillary support services. Since its founding over 30 years ago, Americare has been led by Elly Kleinman to a leadership position in its field. Elly Kleinman is a major philanthropic personality, whose generosity is accompanied by personal involvement in his charitable activities. He maintains extensive gemilus chessed involvements in virtually every aspect of Jewish communal life – from education and publications to social services, bikur cholim and Holocaust remembrance. In promoting the needs of Torah mosdos and community organizations, Mr. Kleinman works closely with elected officials on the local and national level, both here and abroad.


Presentation Transcript

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Elly Kleinman KFHEC

KFHEC Tisha B’Av Event :

KFHEC Tisha B’Av Event Comparing the survivors of the Holocaust who maintained their Yiddishkeit to a “mikdash me’at” – a small Bais HaMikdash – Rabbi Paysach Krohn addressed this year’s Kleinman Holocaust Education Center annual Tisha B’Av event. He told the crowd of over 1800 people assembled at Ateres Golda Hall in Boro Park that everyone has that potential and we can learn that lesson from the Kedoshim of the Holocaust. The accompanying exhibit to the program included the Warsaw Ghetto diary of Dr. Hillel Seidman, Chief Archivist of the Warsaw Jewish community. Rabbi Krohn called it a sefer kodesh and an Eichah for the modern times. Also in the exhibit were original pages from Chaim Yitzchok Wolgelernter’s memoirs, written while he was in hiding and recently published as The Unfinished Diary: A Chronicle of Tears. Rabbi Krohn pointed out that it is a diary of emunah and hashkafa, full of both suffering and faith. While the author did not survive, Rabbi Krohn exhorted the audience that the rest of our lives remain to be written and every day should be lived “al kiddush Hashem.” The other guest speaker was retired U.S. Army Sgt. Seymour Kaplan. Just 19 years old and a Yiddish-speak- ing machine gunner from Brooklyn 70 years ago at the time of the liberation of Dachau, he was asked to serve as a translator for top American military personnel. He told the audience he did not know what Dachau was when he entered the concentration camp – and then kept the audience rapt with his story of what he witnessed. The sights were so horrifying that he repressed the memories for 50 years, he doubt- ed his own experiences, and then only started speaking about it over the last few years. Additionally, as if to prove to himself that what he had seen had been real, he had artifacts that he had confiscated from Nazi soldiers in Dachau and even from Hitler’s residence – all of which he shared with the audience at the KHEC event.

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Kaplan’s face mirrored the shock he still expresses at the dehumanization he saw. He described stacks of children’s eyeglasses in Dachau and said he was reminded of it every time when, later as a school teacher, he would see young students with gold wire-rimmed eyeglasses. He also spoke of desperately searching through bodies in the hope that he could find one person alive. Rabbi Sholom Friedmann, director and CEO of the KHEC, introduced a new KHEC video, “The Resilience of Klal Yisroel,” by explaining that it tells the story of Rabbi Yaakov Avigdor and his son, Rabbi Yitzchak Avigdor, of Poland. The video is based not just on a story but also on documents and artifacts that the Avigdor family has donated to the KHEC Archives. Rabbi Friedmann told the audience that seeing these objects in the video, just as seeing the objects in the exhibit, supports the stories being told and strengthens the lessons to be absorbed. He thanked the Avigdor family for enabling students and other visitors to the museum and to KHEC programs to learn from the story of this incredible family and said that everyone can be “mischazek” from them. Mr. Shlome Chaimovits chaired the Tisha B’Av event and is both the vice president of the board of the KHEC and the president of the Agudath Israel Zichron Moshe Shul on 50th Street in Boro Park, atop which the future home of the KHEC is being built.

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