Uniting Families – A Poignant Project
In honor of the State of Israel’s 64th Independence Day, EL AL decided to initiate a “Celebrate Independence Day in Israel
” project, asking friends on the Israeli Facebook page to recount which relative or friend living overseas they would want to bring to Israel to celebrate Yom HaAtzmaut. The activity also took place on EL AL's international Facebook page where friends explained why they wanted to visit Israel on Yom HaAtzmaut. Some 800 people around the world told their stories, all brimming with love of and yearnings for Israel. Of these, three stories were chosen: two Israelis who wished to bring their loved ones and one on the international Facebook page who wanted to celebrate in Israel with her friends.
Their stories are part of the collective Israeli experience:
Cipora Katz who left Israel for the USA as a child, but never stopped being an Israeli, and who, together with her aunt, Esther Katz Kushnir, fulfilled her father’s dying wish that she visit the grave of her Uncle Menahem who fell in the War of Independence.
Loes Ittmann from Holland, the granddaughter of Righteous Gentiles, came to visit the second and third generations of the Rotman family in Karkur, Israel. The materfamilias survived the Holocaust thanks to Loes's grandfather who saved her, and the two families have continued to keep in touch throughout the generations. Loes arrived with her sister and together with the Rotman family celebrated Israel’s 64th Independence Day in Israel.
Carine Chitayat set up the “Adopt a Family” organization in San Diego, California, to offer support to Israeli terror victims. Through this organization she adopts Israeli families. On this Yom Ha’atzmaut she celebrated with those families, who over the years have become an inseparable part of her own family.
Through the Celebrate Independence Day in Israel activity, we heard many moving stories about the ties with Israel and to the unique ways those ties were maintained, where distance was no barrier. We thank all the participants and are proud to have played a leading role in strengthening ties between Israel and its supporters throughout the world.
Happy Yom Ha’atzmaut!
You can read the stories through the
following link to the Facebook application