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Montreal Honors the Memory of Beer Sheva Victims of Carmel Fire

CJA has created a scholrship in memory of four prison wardens lost in the fires

By: Leonard Carl
Published: January 16th, 2012 in News » World
Carmel Fire
In December 2010, the massive Carmel fire cost the lives of 44 Israelis and destroyed thousands of dunams of forest. The country was left stunned and grieving by the scale of the disaster and the enormous loss of life.

Among the casualties were four prison wardens from Beer Sheva – Yaron Brami, Dimitri Kolozov, Rami Yisraeli and Vladislav Rahamimov.

“All four funerals took place in Beer Sheva on the same day,” recalls Arie Levy, representative of Federation CJA Montreal, which has partnered with Beer Sheva for almost twenty years. “The city virtually came to a standstill. The Jewish community of Montreal felt the tragedy acutely and was determined to help.”

In memory of the four local prison wardens, and in consultation with the Beer Sheva municipality and the bereaved families, Federation CJA decided to create a special scholarship fund for deserving students. Members of the Montreal community across the board contributed generously to the fund, which is expected to award twenty scholarships every year for three years. The fund committee includes representatives of the municipality, Federation CJA, the bereaved families, and Start Up -- the center for young adults in Beer Sheva which was founded in part by Federation CJA. The committee jointly agreed on the criteria on which the scholarships would be awarded.

“The scholarship fund was set up to honor the memory of four heroes of Israel,” said Yossi Tanuri, director general of UIA Canada. “As such, the recipients bear a great responsibility to prove themselves worthy.”

At a recent ceremony which took place in Beer Sheva scholarships were awarded to the first set of twenty students. Tributes were paid to the four local victims, whose families were present as guests of honor. The families had been closely involved in planning the ceremony and had prepared poignant movies about their loved ones.

Rubik Danilovitz, the mayor of Beer Sheva, spoke of the importance of social solidarity and giving to the community – values which were personified by the victims of the Carmel fire. He noted that the scholarship recipients had committed themselves to volunteering in meaningful community programs, in return for the financial support they had been given.

Related articles: Carmel, Fire, Beer Sheva, CJA, Montreal, Scholarship, Israel
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