Boy Scout troop participates in 2022 state Holocaust commemoration | The Wake Weekly
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Boy Scout troop participates in 2022 state Holocaust commemoration

Posted on May 2, 2022

Updated on May 3, 2022

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Boy Scout Jake Phetteplace of Wake Forest assists Holocaust survivor Lex Silberger in lighting a candle.

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Boy Scout Jake Phetteplace of Wake Forest assists Holocaust survivor Lex Silberger in lighting a candle.

RALEIGH — On April 24, Boy Scouts from Troop 500 of Wake Forest United Methodist Church took part in the North Carolina State Holocaust Commemoration.
Sponsored by the North Carolina Council on the Holocaust — a state agency in the N.C. Department of Public Instruction — the annual commemoration remembers the six million Jews and millions of other victims of the Holocaust — including the Roma, Jehovah Witnesses, the chronically disabled, male homosexuals, political prisoners and POWs.  
The day also pays tribute to the Righteous Among the Nation who risked their lives to save Jews, the soldiers who liberated the Nazi camps, and all victims of genocide and hate crimes. 
Memorial candles were lit in their honor, assisted by Scout Jake Phetteplace of Wake Forest. Lexie Nuell of Temple Beth Or in Raleigh led memorial prayers and provided musical inspiration. The featured speaker was Talli Dippold, a granddaughter of four Holocaust survivors who shared her grandmother’s survivor story. Talli is the Stan Greenspon director of Holocaust Education Fellowship Program and the associate director of the Stan Greenspon Holocaust and Social Justice Education Center at Queens University in Charlotte.
Wake Forest resident Shelly Bleiweiss, a child of two Holocaust survivors and chair of the commemoration committee, welcomed the more than 150 attendees for the first in-person program in three years. The program was held outdoors at the David R. Kahn pavilion on the campus of the Raleigh-Cary Jewish Community Center in Raleigh. 
Bleiweiss reminded the attendees that the goal of the Nazi regime and their collaborators was to eliminate every Jewish man, woman and child from the face of the earth, just for being Jewish. While they succeeded in murdering two out of every three Jews living in Europe at the time, each of the victims had a name and a story. It is the memories of their existence that must be remembered.  
Attendees also heard updated information about the Gizella Gross Abramson Holocaust Education Act, bipartisan NC Legislation mandating Holocaust education in public schools. 
In his concluding remarks, Bleiweiss reminded attendees that “the Holocaust did not start with gas chambers. It started with politicians dividing the people into “us” vs “them.” It started with intolerance and hate speech — and escalated when people stopped caring, became desensitzed, and turned a blind eye.”

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