Holocaust Remembrance Day Service to Be Held at Culver City Cemetery

Star of David with text we remember, Holocaust memory day

Photo: Getty Images

CULVER CITY (CNS) - There will be a Holocaust Remembrance Day service Tuesday at Hillside Memorial Park and Mortuary in Culver City, including a presentation by Leora Raikin, a founder and executive director of the David Labkovski Project.

The project seeks to engage students through Labkovski's artwork in Holocaust history in an attempt to begin constructive conversations about the dangers of hatred, bigotry, racism and antisemitism.

Raikin is a niece of Labkovski and an educator, artist, and author who teaches students about the Holocaust and Jewish life in Eastern Europe through his artwork.

Labkovski was born in what is now the Lithuanian capital of Vilnius in 1906, was a set designer at the Moscow State Yiddish Theater and attended the art academy in Leningrad. He was drafted into the Soviet army in 1937 and arrested shortly thereafter and sentenced to a Siberian gulag as "an enemy of the state."

Labkovski was released after three years and returned with his wife to Vilnius following the slaughter of nearly all of city's Jews by the Nazis and would go on to document life in the city before, during and after the Holocaust with his paintbrush and pencils.

Labkovski emigrated to Israel in 1958 and died in 1991.

The 10 a.m. service will be streamed at www.hillsidememorial.org/holocaust-remembrance-day.

The Anti-Defamation League's Western Division will mark Yom HaShoah by streaming the 1953 episode of "This Is Your Life" featuring Hanna Bloch Kohner, a Holocaust survivor who lived through four concentration camps, including Auschwitz. The episode was the first time the Holocaust was mentioned on American television.

A discussion with Kohner's daughter, educator Julie Kohner, and ADL West Coast senior staff will follow.

The virtual event will begin at 12:30 p.m. Registration can be made at adl.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_GIekrzmYSbCt6IpWuZrkFA#/registration

A communitywide Holocaust Remembrance Day commemoration was held Sunday at Pan Pacific Park, marking the 80th anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto uprising and the revolts at the Sobibor and Treblinka death camps, and included a speech by Harry Davids, whose parents were murdered at Sobibor.

The keynote address was delivered by Jeffrey Abrams, the Los Angeles regional director of the Anti-Defamation League, who discussed the importance of the organization's new #LearnToNeverForget campaign, a public awareness and advocacy campaign to improve and expand Holocaust education.

Under a 1953 law passed by the Knesset, the Israeli parliament, Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually observed on the 27th day of Nisan on the Hebrew calendar, which began at sundown Monday and ends at sundown Tuesday.

President Joe Biden issued a proclamation Friday declaring Sunday through April 23 as the "Days of Remembrance of Victims of the Holocaust," and calling "upon the people of the United States to observe this week and pause to remember victims and survivors of the Holocaust."

"The horrors of the Holocaust are painful to recount -- the savage murder of innocent families and the systemic dehumanization of entire populations," Biden said in the proclamation. "We remember the cries for help that went unanswered and the bright futures cut short.

"We must never look away from the truth of what happened. The rite of remembrance becomes more urgent with each passing year, as fewer survivors remain to share their stories and open our eyes to the harms of unchecked hatred."

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