Our Meeting of the 101st Year of our Club got started with a lot of chatter and virtual fellowship with many members on Zoom. I’m personally grateful to each of you who keep us connected. Len Lanzi, thanks for keeping us communicating on Zoom.
I hope each of you are having fun and planning on joining us in person as we move forward into the second half of our Rotary year. We have some new members waiting to meet everyone and more of you are starting to invite more guest each week. Thanks, Richard Lombari, for those encouraging suggestions on how to invite more friends and associates to our meetings.Program of the Day:
We enjoyed a wonderful and informative Zoom Club meeting this past Friday. The presentation was given by Rita Lurie and her daughter, Leslie Gilbert-Lurie. This Mother/Daughter teamed up to co-author a book which brings together the stories of Rita, Leslie, and Leslie’s daughter, Mikaela, and reveals how deeply the Holocaust lives in the hearts and minds of survivors and their descendants. Rita was five years old when she and her family were forced to flee their home in Poland to hide from the Nazis. After enduring unspeakable tragedy, she and her family eventually moved to America, where Rita built a family of her own.
We were made to feel as if we were sitting in Rita’s living room, at her home, as she sat quietly while Leslie shared her mother’s journey with us. Others took life threatening chances to hide Rita’s family along with other families in a five-foot-high attic of their home. The children forced to be quiet with German soldiers prowling about in search of Jewish families. Their lives were threatened not just by German soldiers but by the elements of nature, freezing in the winter and enduring the sweltering heat in the summer.
Some of the surviving families had to learn to walk and speak without a whisper because of the silence and restricted movement while in hiding. Hearing the story of Rita and her family’s survival was heart melting. Survivor reflections and testimonies are important because sharing their stories will help us to never forget the truth of the Holocaust.
Special thanks to Past President, Sharon Perlmutter-Gavin for introducing the program to our Club.
In showing our appreciation to Rita and Leslie we are sending each of them a certificate acknowledging, as a living tribute, a tree will be planted in our Nation’s Forest in each of their honor as a part of the United States National Forest Restoration with our thanks.