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When I sat down with Emil Hecht in Jerusalem

This interview with Emil Hecht was conducted in Jerusalem iin 1981, at the time of the first world gathering of Jewish Holocaust survivors. It was originally printed in the July 3, 1981 IJN. At the time Hillel Goldberg was the IJN Israel correspondent and senior editor.

JERUSALEM — Behind Emil Hecht’s successful business career in Denver lies a complex tapestry of suffering, of reflection and of heroism.

Now a partner with Larry Mizel in Denver’s largest home-building corporation, 37 years ago Hecht was in Auschwitz. A year later he was one of the “four horses” smuggling Jews out of Eastern Europe. Two years before that he was mastering advanced mathematics, Shakespeare, Bialik and eight languages.

And two weeks ago Hecht was in Israel retelling how and why all but one of his siblings survived the Holocaust, this at a time when 99 out of 100 were killed.

 

Last Updated ( Thursday, 16 December 2010 12:41 )

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Reflections

Loving our children: Separately but equal

MY son called from college the other night and asked to talk to his sister. “She’s out at a poetry reading,” I answered casually. “How are things with you?” “What do you mean she’s OUT?” he exclaimed indignantly. “You let her stay out past 10 p.m. on a school night?” I braced myself for the inevitable — the consistent complaint that followed me throughout their childhood like a well-trained dog.  

Last Updated ( Thursday, 23 December 2010 09:58 )

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View from Central Park

‘Acharei mot’

WHERE do I begin? This tragedy is too huge even to try to capture. How do I, little me, attempt to write about the heart- shattering, excruciating and deeply tragic departure of an angel from this earth? Rav Uriel Malka, zecher tzaddik li’veracha, of blessed memory, was my younger brother’s seventh grade Torah teacher. I remember, even before Rav Malka’s arrival in Denver, he was already our hero. His story preceded his arrival. He was delayed because he fought  in the Lebanon war that w...

Last Updated ( Thursday, 16 December 2010 12:40 )

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Reflections

Cellular love

MY mother called tonight while I was cooking dinner. Again, for the third time today. I knew who it was because the words “Mom’s cell” lit up my own cell phone like a marquee on Times Square. I lay down my cutting knife and shook the pieces of onion and red pepper from my hands. Mom with a cell-phone; boy, have things changed! There was a time in my life, B.C. (Before Cell phones) when my mother would become anxious, depressed and even mildly hysterical because she couldn’t reach me by ...

Last Updated ( Thursday, 16 December 2010 12:38 )

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View From Denver

Like a fiery angel, briefly in our midst

RABBI Uriel Malka’s naturally embracing smile will never again spread across his face, but its imprint will never leave mine. Who is “the new teacher from Israel”? This is his first meeting with the parents. There is a staccato quality to his English as he searches for the right word from out of his obviously more comfortable Hebrew vocabulary. One thing is clear: He is in love with the prospect of teaching Torah to children, including our son Chaim. Fast forward four years: Rabbi Malka...

Last Updated ( Thursday, 09 December 2010 14:17 )

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Should the US support the nuclear deal negotiated between the P5+1 and Iran?
 

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