A moving tribute to over 400 Holocaust survivors at Aventura Turnberry Jewish Center was recently sponsored by
Scott Scharg, a great humanitarian, philanthropist and distinguished member of the synagogue. The tribute included honoring Victor and Celia Cynamon, Mala Dorfman, and her late husband Henry, and featured Harvard Law Professor Alan Dershowitz, and Israeli Air Force Lt. Col. (Res.) Danny Grossman.
Scott attended the Yom Hashoa Commemorate program at the synagogue, and was moved when Victor Cynamon, Vice President and Chairman of the Holocaust Committee, spoke. Knowing the survivors are at an advanced age, he wanted to honor them. Scott was also affected by the synagogue’s Holocaust Memorial Gallery with three powerful panels: The Remembrance Wall, the Children’s Memorial Wall and the Partisan –Fighters for Freedom.
As a passionate Zionist and supporter of the State of Israel, he attributes his love of the Jewish homeland to a recent visit to Israel, which made a strong impact on him and strengthened his Jewish identity.
Among the numerous organizations in Israel that he supports are Nefesh B’Nefesh, consisting of volunteer soldiers from all over the world, who come alone to Israel without families; Tel-Hashomer Hospital, which treats burn victims from war combats; and State of Israel Bonds. Scott endowed the “Chair for Israel Programming” at Aventura Turnberry Jewish Center, enabling the synagogue to bring world-famous Scholars-in- Residence and guest speakers from the highest ranks in Israeli government, health and culture. Scott also is a major benefactor of the Greater Miami Jewish Federation and a Society-level Founder of Mount Sinai Medical Center.
Scott supports the programs of Professor Dershowitz, advocating the Case for Israel on school campuses, providing young Jewish students with the understanding of the legitimacy of the State of Israel and alerting them to the often-disguised attempts by anti- Semitic forces to turn young Jews against their religion and/or the State of Israel.
Lt. Col. Grossman shared the story of Major General Amir Eshel, son of Holocaust survivors, Commander of the Israeli Air Force, who led the formation of three IAF F- 15 eagles on a fly-over of the Auschwitz death camp. As it flew over the camp, Eshel broadcast a message to an IDF ceremony taking place below: “We pilots of the Air Force,flying in the skies above the camp of horrors, arose from the ashes of the millions of victims and shoulder their silent cries, salute their courage and promise to be the shield of the Jewish people and its nation Israel.”
Aventura Mayor Susan Gottlieb quoted Simon Wiesenthal, himself a victim of Nazi genocide during the World War II: “Freedom is not a gift from heaven…we must work to earn it every day” and “Hope lives when people remember”. Mayor Gottlieb added, “Today we remember and commit to work with all decent people to secure a collective future based on human dignity and freedom.”
The Aventura Turnberry Jewish Center is located at 20400 NE 30th Avenue, Aventura 33180. To learn more, visit www.atjc.org.