Sheepshead Bay community remembers the Holocaust

Sheepshead Bay community remembers the Holocaust
Photo by Jon Farina

May their memories be a blessing — and a lesson.

Multiple generations gathered at Holocaust Memorial Park in Sheepshead Bay for the 14th-annual Holocaust Remembrance Day on Sept. 17 to honor the lives of the millions of Jews who were slaughtered by the Nazis. It was an honor to be surrounded by Shoah survivors, their children and grandchildren, and veterans who risked their lives to help stop the atrocities, said Councilman Mark Treyer (D–Coney Island), and coming together to remember will hopefully help quell more recent stirrings of hate.

“I am proud, as I am every year, to have joined so many members of the community, including Holocaust survivors, in remembrance of all who were lost as a result of an unspeakable tragedy that occurred just 78 years ago,” said Treyger, whose own grandparents were World War II veterans and Holocaust survivors. “At a time when we continue to see hate of all kinds rear its ugly head, I cannot overstate how important this event remains.”

One survivor who was born in modern day Ukraine and now lives in Sheepshead Bay believes it’s important to remember each year what happened more than 70 years ago, said 82-year-old Izea Katzap’s son on his behalf.

“He lost pretty much his whole family, and he’s a child survivor,” said Arik Katzap. “He came to the memorial because of the importance of it and to commemorate the memories of all those lost.”

And what made the memorial even more special was having young children there to carry on the stories of survivors, to ensure that such a tragedy never happens again, said the neighborhood’s councilman.

“Educating our youth about the atrocities of the Holocaust is essential to ensuring that history will never repeat itself. Events like yesterday’s Holocaust Remembrance Day provide the younger generation with an opportunity to hear stories of survival from those who witnessed the horrors themselves,” said Councilman Chaim Deutsch (D–Sheepshead Bay). “As the number of survivors dwindles, these children will carry on their memories and fight to make sure that the world never forgets.”

Reach reporter Julianne Cuba at (718) 260–4577 or by e-mail at jcuba@cnglocal.com. Follow her on Twitter @julcuba.