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August 29, 2013 - Image 8

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2013-08-29

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New Hebrew Memorial Chapel
program keeps the memory of
children lost in the Holocaust alive.

Barbara Lewis

I Special to the Jewish News



without hate


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8 August 29 • 2013


aia Faer was born in
Romania in 1935 and per-
ished in the Holocaust only
eight years later. Her father's name
was Haim. Her mother was Ruhlea.
During World War
II, she lived in
Russia. That's
about all we
know of her.
One and a
half million
children were
among the 6
million Jews
murdered in
the Holocaust.
Now, thanks to
an innovative pro-
gram sponsored by
Hebrew Memorial
Chapel and the
Holocaust Memorial
Center in Farmington Hills, the
names and lives of the children lost
in the Holocaust will not be
In the Adopt-a-Kaddish Project,
members of the community will
"adopt" a child and say Kaddish, the
memorial prayer, for that child every
year on the anniversary of his or
her death. Participants will receive a
personal file about the child, includ-
ing biographical information and a
photo, if one is available. They'll get
extra copies to share with family or
with fellow congregants or organiza-
tion members.
They also will receive yearly notic-
es of the child's yahrtzeit (anniversa-
ry of death) from Hebrew Memorial
Chapel in Oak Park.
A similar program was created by
Rabbi Allan Blaine at Temple Beth
El in Rockaway Park, N.Y., said Otto
Dube, managing funeral director at
Hebrew Memorial. Forty families
there participated.
"My wife, Shelley,
read about it and
thought it would
work well as a
effort," said Dube,
whose parents were
Holocaust survi-
vors. Dube said
Otto Dube

he considers the program a worthy
memorial to his father.
"One of my father's jobs was
working in an orphanage he said.
"There was constant turnover as
the children were taken away to be
killed, and it tore him up."
The program is
designed for syna-
gogues and commu-
nity organizations,
though unaffiliated
individuals also are
welcome to par-
Dube presented
the Adopt-a-
Kaddish idea
to the board
of the Hebrew
which oper-
ates Hebrew
Haia Faer
Memorial Chapel.
They voted
unanimously to approve it. The fol-
lowing day, board member Michael
Eizelman, an attorney from Oak
Park, adopted the memory of Haia
"I think it's a terrific idea, espe-
cially because there are fewer and
fewer survivors around," Eizelman
said. "This is a beautiful way
of keeping the memory [of the
Holocaust] alive, especially for chil-
dren. I grew up in Oak Park with
survivors living next door to me.
But my son-in-law, who is 32 and an
emergency room physician, told me
he never saw anyone with a number
on their arm:'

Public Acknowledgement

Dube said he hopes participants will
make a public declaration during a
Shabbat service or organizational
meeting where they will announce
the name of the child and pledge to
say Kaddish for that child so that his
or her memory won't be forgotten.
The names of the adopted chil-
dren will be remembered publicly
in the congregation, the way family
members are memorialized annually.
Adopters who cannot come to ser-
vices can ask someone else to recite
Kaddish for the child.
Information about the children
comes from the Central Database of

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