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Letter to Tamar Fogel

Friday, 18 March, 2011 - 2:44 pm

Dear Friends,  

Here is the letter I sent to twelve-year-old Tamar Fogel who lost both of her parents and three siblings in a massacre inside her home in Itamar last Friday night.  

Dear Tamar,

Since hearing of the terrible attack in your home on Friday night, I feel horribly pained; my heart is broken and bleeding with you and your family.  The faces of your beloved parents stand in front of my eyes constantly. I feel as if I have always known them. The smiles of your brothers Yoav and Elad, and the pure face of your baby sister, Hadas, are alive in front of me and don't let me rest. A part of me is crying inside all the time, and sometimes brakes out. 

You have now become a little mother for your two brothers. I know it's a lot to ask of a 12 year old child, who was the first to witness the worst scene man can ever imagine. I want you to know that we are all with you. Millions of your brothers and sisters around the world are praying for you and for Roee and Yishai,that Hashem may give you the strength you'll need to continue, the strength to be able to enjoy life, to sing and dance, to play and run, just like every other child.

In the last few days, my friends and I have felt the need to turn this pain into a positive motive, to turn the tears into a source of inspiration, and to transform the darkness into great light. 

We heard how important Jewish education has been to your parents; we all know that you had children over for a Shabbat gathering hours before the terrorists entered your home. We would like to continue their legacy; we want it to make an everlasting impact on Jewish life on Vancouver Island. 

While discussing this with friends in our small but lovely Jewish community, we have decided to form "The Fogel's Jewish Enrichment Project". This new initiative will bring Jewish education in the cities of our Island to a new level of involvement and connection for Jewish children. 

At the present time, there is no Jewish Day School on Vancouver Island. At Chabad, some thirty five children come every Sunday for Hebrew School. I bet you are wondering, and rightfully so, about the other days of the week. Can once-a-week learning provide a child adequate excitement about our heritage? This is what we want to answer with the FJE project. 

The plan is that every Sunday, each child will receive a week's worth of daily assignments to complete throughout the week, appropriate to their age and level. If all tasks have been completed each day - they will receive a special prize, on a weekly basis. This project will be available through a special website for children in other towns throughout Vancouver Island. We believe that we have the right people to design this program and turn it into a smashing success. 

The Jewish education of Yoav, Elad and Hadas was cruelly interrupted by bloody hands of the evil murderer - we will do what we can to continue their education here on the other side of the planet. 

This is the Jewish answer to terrorism. This is how we plan to turn bitter tears to joy.

Wishing you, Roee, and Yishai a Shabbat Shalom, and may you know of no more sorrow from now and forever.  

Now I can get ready to celebrate Purim. 

Meir Kaplan

I invite you to send your letter to the Fogel family here.



Comments on: Letter to Tamar Fogel

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