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This Yizkor Book of the Destroyed Kehillah

Community activists decided to publish a large book in memory of the destroyed Ciechanow Kehillah. We gathered material for over ten years. Some of it was in New York where some Ciechanowers wanted to publish a Yizkor Book. Our dear friends in Detroit, a small group of Ciechanowers, but with a strong will and devotion for this project, helped a lot in making possible the publication of this Yizkor Book. Binyamin Apel and his family, who visited Israel, were the deciding factor in this matter.

We received back the material we had sent to America and at a large meeting of Ciechanowers, in honor of Binyamin Apel, the foundation was laid for the large undertaking, namely, the Ciechanow Yizkor Book. A book committee was formed with: Moishe Fuchs, Yehoshua Grossbard, Yaacov Bronrot, Moishe Kolko, Noah Zabludowicz, Yaacov Rubinstein, Zola Apel and Riva Gonska. Those abroad who contributed much energy for the book are: Moishe Lesser and Binyamin Apel from Detroit, and Yosef Mundzak from Paris.

 

Yaar Kdoshim -- Martyrs' Forest

The Ciechanow landsleit wanted to memorialize their destroyed Kehillah with something that would symbolize the destruction of our dearest ones and at the same time do something for the new Jewish life in the State of Israel. So, we turned our eyes to the Judean Hills. When you arrive at this place you get a feeling of holiness. The heroic history of our people rises in front of you as it lived in its own land. In those ancient hills one feels the connection between the past and the present -- the eternal Jewish history throughout all generations.

This wonderful part of Israel, the Israeli government decided to transform into a forest as an eternal memory of the six million martyrs.

[Page 492]

Every Kehillah plants trees in the name of the destroyed.

In 'Yaar Kdoshim'
In “Yaar Kdoshim”

Picture Index

 

Ceremony of planting trees in memory of the destroyed Ciechanow Kehillah
Ceremony of planting trees in memory of the destroyed Ciechanow Kehillah

Picture Index

 

A detailed list of those who perished is found in the archives of Keren Kayemet (J.N.F.). A special stone with the name of each Kehillah and country is in every pathway of the forest.

On the 27th of Nisan, the day of the uprising, representatives of all the Jewish Kehillahs from all over the world gather, and a large memorial service takes place in memory of the six million martyrs.

We also, the Ciechanow landsleit decided that our Kehillah must also be memorialized in this martyrs' forest. Much effort went into collecting money in Israel but the greatest help we got from our dear landsleit in Detroit who helped and who were the first in all our fund-raising. Our Parisian landsleit also planted a number of trees in this forest.

*

The committee of the Gmilat Hesed Fund became, in time, a general Ciechanow committee. Additional people became active: Yekhiel Yisraeli (Trombka), Tzaduk Ostry, Moishe Shlesinger, and others. The committee broadened its activities, arranged memorial programs with suitable content. In the early days we still had at the memorials the presence of the patriarchal figure of our Rov, Reb Bronrot Z”L. After his death various personalities were invited, such as: Rov Tkherz and others.

At the gatherings various suggestions were made. Through the imitative of Yosef Trombka we published a brochure in memory of the heroine, Rosa Robota. A committee of the following participated in its publication: Yekhiel Yisraeli, Noah Zabludowicz and M. Kolko. Moishe Fuchs edited the brochure, which was widely distributed amongst the Ciechanowers in Israel as well as abroad. As a result Ciechanowers in many lands got in touch with the Ciechanow committee in Israel. New projects were undertaken by the landsleit in order to memorialize the Ciechanow Jewish martyrs.

[Page 494]

Banquets in honor of the guests
Binyamin Apel from Detroit and Tenenbaum from Paris
Binyamin Apel from Detroit and Tenenbaum from Paris

Picture Index

 

Tenenbaum greets Binyamin Apel and his wife
Tenenbaum greets Binyamin Apel and his wife

Picture Index

 

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With great respect we recall the founders of the Ciechanow committee in Israel who have gone to their eternal rest:

Rov Chaim Mordecai Bronrot

Like a faithful father, he was tied to the survivors of his Kehillah. As long as he was here with us in Israel we didn't feel our homelessness so much. In the midst of his fruitful and creative work he was taken away from us. May his memory be blessed.

 

Moishe Kleinyud

A quiet, introverted person, he was very active already in Ciechanow in cultural work. He was the secretary of the Ciechahow Farband in Israel, and worked tirelessly for the good of all. He departed from us in his early years.

 

A. D. Vinditsky

A precious Jew, a talmid khokhem, he was one of the founders of Mizrachi in Ciechanow; was a delegate at Zionist congresses; a fighter for the idea of peace in the world. He published brochures, appealing to all world leaders, regarding peace. His writings about various types of Ciechanowers are found in this book.

 

Golda Mazur

Golda Mazur laid the foundation of our Gmilat Hesed Fund by contributing a sizable sum. She was the wife of the Warsaw Kehillah president, Reb Eliyahu Mazur. But enjoying life in another place, she wanted to memorialize her parents and family who lived in Ciechanow -- the Klinger family. Through her initiative the Gmilat Hesed Fund for our landsleit was established. In addition to the sum that she gave originally, she covered nearly all the expenses of the Fund during her lifetime.

[Page 496]

Shulamit Porakh

Shulamit was one of the founders of our committee. Her house was always open for the participants who were active on behalf of the Ciechanowers.

 

A. Fried

One of the people who was always ready to be active on behalf of others. He was one of the first to work on behalf of the Ciechanowers.

 

Wolf Henekh Zilbershtrom

He was one of the founders of the Gmilat Hesed Fund in Israel. He was a loyal and devoted member of our committee. His work on behalf of the Fund is described in this book.

*

In the framework of our review about Ciechanow in Israel we want to thank all those who are carrying on activities for the benefit of the survivors of Ciechanow and in memorializing the destroyed Kehillah. Presently there is an effort being made to build, in memory of Rosa Robota, a culture-house in her name in a kibbutz in Israel and we hope that abroad there will be interest in this too.

A Ciechanower in Israel

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