Thursday, October 19, 2017
Jewish partisans who rose up against the Nazis through physical and spiritual defiance will come together for the largest gathering of resistance fighters in recent memory.
The Jewish Partisan Educational Foundation (JPEF) gala on November 5th will recognize the actions of partisans such as Motke Ginsburg who blew up 17 trains loaded with Nazi soldiers, bombed a hydro-electric plant, and killed 60-plus Nazi soldiers during an ambush. His soon-to-be-wife, Judith, jumped from a train heading for the Majdanek Concentration Camp and served as a combatant, eventually joining the Bielski Brigade, which rescued more than 1,200 Jews from extermination.
“As with all Holocaust survivors, the number of partisans is dwindling,” notes Mitch Braff, JPEF founder and board member. “JPEF wants to celebrate their miraculous stories of courage in the face of evil so we may honor the Jewish partisan legacy and continue to educate the world through their stories.”
JPEF brings Jewish resistance stories to more than one million students annually through a multimedia and interactive educational curricula. Learning about these partisans and their accomplishments transforms perceptions about the Jewish experience during the Holocaust.
The gala event will honor Elliott Felson, son and nephew of partisans Don and Stan Felson, as well as Matthew Bielski, grandson of partisans Sonia and Zus Bielski. As JPEF board president, Felson brought worldwide recognition to partisans as a driving force in Holocaust education.
“I am proud of our achievements, and of the millions of young people we are empowering through the Jewish partisans,” he said.
Bielski, chairperson of JPEF’s 3G (third generation) group, spearheaded the effort to collect information about adult grandchildren of partisans living all over the world.
“I want to share my grandparents’ most important lesson with kids today,” he explains. “Never give up!”
Other second and third generation partisan descendants will share stories of family members, including Eta Wrobel who helped organize an all-Jewish partisan unit of nearly 80 people. Her unit set mines to hinder German movement and to cut off supply routes. Asked after the war about her heroism, she said, “The biggest resistance that we could have done to the Germans was to survive.”
November 5, 2017
Guastavino’s, 409 East 59th St. New York City
Cocktails at 5:00pm; Dinner at 6:00pm
For more information, contact Sheri Rosenblum, Director of Development & Outreach, at email@example.com.