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JCC Holocaust memorial is subject of NW remembrance

From left, Rabbi Billy Lewkowicz, Ken Light, Fred Steiniger and Emily Ellentuck helped lead the Yom HaShoah program at the Ruth and Irving Olson Center for Jewish Life on May 2.

On Thursday, May 2, the Ruth and Irving Olson Center for Jewish Life held a Yom HaShoah Remembrance event. More than 40 attendees heard guest speakers Ken Light and Fred Steiniger talk about the Holocaust memorial at the entrance to the Tucson Jewish Community Center and watched a video of its artist, Israeli Ami Shamir, explaining his vision. He designed the large concrete tablet to be reminiscent of the Ten Commandments, but instead of commandments, it is inscribed with the names of death camps, concentration camps, and ghettos. The column rising from the reflecting pool is shattered at its peak, as was Jewish society throughout Europe. The event also featured a presentation by Ariel Goldberg from the Jewish History Museum/Holocaust History Center on the museum’s digital “Mapping Migration” photographic memoir project. Rabbi Billy Lewkowicz spoke about the recent shooting at a synagogue in Poway, California, and led Kaddish as participants lit yahrzeit candles. Emily Ellentuck, the cantorial intern at Congregation M’kor Hayim, led the crowd in singing Hatikvah and El Male Rachamim.