800 GATHER IN LA TO REMEMBER ISRAEL’S FALLEN SOLDIERS
Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (FIDF), Temple of the Arts and the Israeli Consulate General commemorated ‘Yom Hazikaron’ for fallen Israeli soldiers and victims of terror
BEVERLY HILLS, Calif., May 2 – Nearly 800 members of the Los Angeles community gathered Sunday night at the Steve Tisch Cinema Center at the Saban Theatre to commemorate “Yom Hazikaron,” Israel’s Memorial Day for fallen soldiers and victims of terror. The community-wide night of remembrance was hosted by Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (FIDF), the Temple of the Arts, and the Consulate General of Israel.
“On this Yom Hazikaron, we bow our heads and honor the memory of the fallen,” said Consul General of Israel to the Southwest United States Sam Grundwerg. “We remember that their personal sacrifices granted life to an entire nation, and made possible the ultimate blessing: the blessing of living as a free people in our land.”
More than 55 local schools, synagogues, and organizations partnered for this “Yom Hazikaron” community event. The ceremony honored the memories of Israel’s fallen heroes and paid tribute to the brave men and women in uniform who defend Israel and Jews around the world.
“For countless generations, the men and women of Israel have fought for survival against impossible odds,” said FIDF National Board Member and Western Region President Tony Rubin, who presided as the event’s master of ceremonies. “But despite their constant attempts to bring us down, we, the Jewish people, continue to thrive and prosper, just as we have done for our entire history, thanks to our angels serving in the IDF.”
TOTA Founding Rabbi David Baron led the community in praying for the safety of those in Israel and the men and women of the IDF – and mourned the 23,544 fallen soldiers and victims of terror by reciting the Mourner’s Kaddish.
“Remembering the fallen heroes who defend us against state sponsors of terrorism – and memorializing the innocent victims of acts of terrorism in Israel and around the world – is our moral duty,” said Baron.
Distinguished guests included former and active-duty American and Israeli soldiers, including veteran aviator Mitchell Flint. Flint served as a U.S. Navy fighter pilot during World War II, and, later, as an American volunteer pilot in Israel’s first fighter squadron during its War of Independence. Paying special honor to Mitchell Flint was Israeli Air Force Capt. “I.,”, who flies helicopter rescue missions.
Other distinguished guests included the Mayor of Beverly Hills Hon. Lili Bosse; TOTA President James Blatt; FIDF Western Region Founder and Chairman Emeritus Leo David; FIDF Western Region Chairman Paul Guerin and his wife, Vera; and FIDF Western Region Executive Director Jenna Griffin.