Long Island's Jewish communities pause and reflect on Holocaust Remembrance Day

Congregation Shaaray Shalom in West Hempstead organized an event in which candles were lit.

Emily Drooby

May 6, 2024, 3:23 AM

Updated 18 days ago

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Sunday marked Yom HaShoah, or Holocaust Remembrance Day, and across Long Island Jewish communities gathered to commemorate the lives lost.
Congregation Shaaray Shalom in West Hempstead organized an event in which candles were lit. One was lit to remember the non-Jewish lives lost during the Holocaust. Theother was lit to remember the victims of the Hamas attack in Israel on Oct. 7, and six candles were lit to remember the 6 million Jewish victims of the Holocaust.
Howard Unger was one of the people to light the candles. His father survived the Holocaust. Unger spoke of the atrocities his father witnessed through the Shoah Foundation, which records Holocaust survivors' memories.
A video gave Unger and his family a glimpse of his father’s past.
“We found out about his whole life history and how he survived numerous ghettos, and Auschwitz and the death march," Unger said.
Now Unger shares his father's story to spread awareness about the Holocaust.
Others shared stories similar to Unger's during the event.
"We have to make sure we remember, and we prevent history from repeating itself. Hopefully, we have institutions today that will prevent it from repeating itself,” explained Larry Rosenberg, chair of the Holocaust Remembrance Program.
There was also a conversation with Nancy Spielberg, famed Holocaust documentarian, and sister of Steven Spielberg.
“The younger generations know nothing. There are hardly survivors left. The only thing we have is testimonies and documentaries to continue to tell these stories so we don't repeat history," Spielberg said.


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