Happy 65th Birthday, Israel!
Israel was not created in order to disappear — Israel will endure and flourish. It is the child of hope and the home of the brave.
—John F. Kennedy
Tucson celebrated Yom Ha’atzmaut, Israeli Independence Day, with extra flair this year. Besides highlighting Israel’s innovations and technology, our Israel 65 Festival, held Sunday, April 21 at the Tucson Jewish Community Center, feted those baby boomers who also turn 65 this year. Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona Outreach Director Anne Lowe, herself 65, presented each celebrant with a certificate commemorating their joint birthday with the State of Israel. Following a photo-op, the crowd sang “Happy Birthday” and enjoyed cake on this milestone occasion.
“Am Yisrael Chai!” (“The People of Israel Live!”)
Welcome to the centenarian club
On Friday, May 3, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Tucson Medical Center’s Marshall Conference Center, Elzi Hauer, 101, joined 38 other centenarians and their families at the 2013 Salute to Centenarians. This 26th annual event was cosponsored by the Pima Council on Aging and Tucson Medical Center. A total of 87 local centenarians were identified this year. Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild has declared May Older Americans Month.
Elzi was born on Dec. 25, 1911 in Gyor, Hungary, then part of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy. She has survived World War I, World War II, the Holocaust and life in Communist Hungary. Our celebrant moved to the United States from Hungary in the late 1990s and became a U.S. citizen in 2011, at age 99. Elzi was a secretary and enjoyed reading and sewing. Her strengths include positive thinking and a strong survival instinct. Her son, Gabe, summed up his mother’s demeanor, stating: “She goes with the flow.”
Improving lives — Curing type 1 diabetes
Feb. 1, 2007 was the worst day of Sue Ross’ life — the day her grandson Aiden Glesinger was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes (T1D) at age 3 ½. This disease affects not only parents and siblings but the entire family.
Sue and her son-in-law Jeff Glesinger, who is Aiden’s dad, now serve on the board of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Southern Arizona Branch. They are advocates for better treatment options and ultimately a world without T1D. Sue served as auction chair for “An Evening of Hope: The Green Tie Gala 2013” held at Loews Ventana Canyon Resort on Saturday, May 4. The fundraiser garnered over $150,000 — with more than $80,000 directed to Fund A Cure research. Blues by Five, the band that played during the silent auction, included brothers Jonathan Vogel, 16, guitarist, and Daniel Vogel, 13, bass guitarist, who also have T1D. Following dinner, a powerful video was shown, in which JDRF Ambassadors Aiden, Jonathan and Daniel spoke of their lives with the disease.
More than 200 attendees in the ballroom included Sue’s husband/Aiden’s grandfather, Sonny Ross; Jeff’s wife/Aiden’s mother, April Ross Glesinger; Christine and Peter Aronoff; Sallie and Mort Kranitz; Michelle and Barry Kusman; Claudine and Andrew Messing; Jonathan and Daniel’s parents, Rosi and Ben Vogel; and Wendi and David Willock (of Phoenix).
Time to share
It’s hard to believe that summer is here again. Keep me posted — 319-1112 — for the Aug. 30 Rosh Hashanah issue, complete with Israel summer travel and more. Take care, stay cool, and l’shalom.