By: Geoff Cohen – Vice-Chair | SAZF Cape Council
The SA Zionist Federation hosted a moving and poignant ceremony at Herzlia High School on 24 April 2023. The Cape Town Jewish community came together to commemorate Yom Hazikaron in order to honour our fallen soldiers and brethren who sacrificed their lives defending our beloved Eretz Yisrael.
The programme was well-organized and facilitated by Martine Katz who created the content together with our youth leadership comprising Netzer, Habonim Dror, Diller Teen Fellows, Bnei Akiva, BBYO and the South African Union of Jewish Students, who all played a significant part in the ceremony.
Newly appointed Director, Heather Blumenthal welcomed the community to this commemorative event. Rabbi Sam Thurgood and Rabbi Emma Gottlieb recited Yizkor after the sounding of the siren when the community stood in silence remembering our fallen soldiers and civilian victims.
Ariella Barnett sang a beautiful song called Laila Tov Shaun after which David Cohen, Chairperson of the SAZF Cape Council, gave a moving address of his service in the IDF and the tragic loss of a fellow soldier from his army unit. David’s articulate and emotive address expressed the correct tone of the ceremony.
Special guests were invited to the ceremony to light memorial candles: Jeff Holtzberg on behalf of his uncle, Machalnik; Albert Shorkend; Avril Galp for her husband, Morris Galp, also a Machalnik; and Maya Prass for her father, Dan Prass. Eytan Leib lit a candle in memory of Bnei Akiva Member, Eli Kay, and Sarah Stein lit a candle for Habonim Dror members, Dudi Silbowitz and Neil Fried.
The memorable and emotive ceremony concluded with a communal Kaddish and the singing of the national anthems.
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