Shalom Life | April 27, 2015

United Jewish Appeal of Greater Toronto Honours Brian Williams

CTV/TSN broadcaster joined by Dan Shulman, Elliotte Friedman at UJA’s Sports Night

By: Daniel Horowitz

Published: December 10th, 2012 in News » World

United Jewish Appeal of Greater Toronto Honours Brian Williams
Approximately 300 members of the GTA’s Jewish community came together on Sunday night, December 9th, to join UJA of Greater Toronto in paying tribute to CTV/TSN sportscaster, and a veteran of 14 Olympic Games, Brian Williams, for his courageous stand in support of the 11 Israeli athletes and coaches murdered during the Munich Olympics in 1972.

The enthusiastic crowd, which braved freezing rain to be part of this important evening, were entertained by the troika’s uncanny sports knowledge, and even had the chance to try and stump them with their own sports trivia questions.

Part of UJA’s Sports Night, which featured a panel of sports experts including Williams, ESPN’s Dan Shulman, and Elliotte Friedman of CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada fame, the highlight of the evening was an award presented to William’s for his moral stand that saw him announce, live on the air, his displeasure with the IOC’s decision not to hold a moment of silence for the Munich 11 during the opening ceremonies of this year’s London Games.This year’s Olympics marked the 40th anniversary of the murder of 11 Israeli Olympians by Palestinian terrorists at the Munich games.

“I’m a bit embarrassed to be honoured for doing what is simply the right thing,” an emotional Williams told those in attendance. “My 97-year-old father has a great expression, ‘The hottest places in hell are reserved for those who, in times of crisis, remain neutral.’ And for me, this is a crisis. The Olympics are supposed to be about integrity, sportsmanship, fair play. Ignoring any remembrance of the slaying of – and I used the word slaughter on the air – of Israeli athletes is anything but fair. I remember when the Georgian luger had been killed in a horrific accident up at Whistler, during the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver. As they should have, they held a moment of silence for this lone luger. It was absolutely the right thing to do. But, when you do that and refuse to honour the 11 slain athletes and coaches, something is very wrong. To me, the fact that they were ignored is because they were Israeli, and to me, a Roman Catholic, it was important for a non-Jew to take a moral stand. I’m honoured to be here tonight, and I’m honoured that you remember me, but more importantly we must all, whatever our religion, and whatever our beliefs, we must always remember the Israeli athletes and coaches who were slaughtered,”

Another highlight of the evening were the heartfelt, appreciative words of Larry Tanenbaum, the Chairman of Maple Leafs Sports & Entertainment, who, unable to attend, sent his thoughts via video.

“It is appropriate that, as we stand in the light of the Chanukah menorah, we honour this man who shed light on this travesty, and, who helped ensure that the horrors of Munich will never be forgotten,” said Mr. Tanenbaum. “If you’re like me, you took a tremendous amount of pride in Brian’s principled stand, a stand which, in keeping with the highest ideals of the Olympic tradition, also illustrated perfectly, the stark moral contrast with that taken by the IOC. Brian’s inspirational and courageous public stand was a jarring and powerful moment of broadcasting, wedged in juxtaposition to the light and entertaining fare that preceded it and followed it.”

The event, which took place at the new Leo and Sala Goldhar Celebration Centre, Shirley Auslander Hall, on Vaughan’s Joseph and Wolf Lebovic Jewish Community Campus, highlighted the work of UJA’s Annual Campaign 2013, chaired by Sarena Koschitzky and Bruce Leboff who spoke about the importance of holding a major UJA event in York Region.

Former New York State Governor and Possible Presidential Candidate Has Longstanding Jewish Ties Former New York State Governor and Possible Presidential Candidate Has Longstanding Jewish Ties TrendingIsrael: One Of The Happiest Countries On Earth Israel: One Of The Happiest Countries On Earth TrendingNetanyahu Condemns Ultra Orthodox Jewish Attackers of IDF Officer Netanyahu Condemns Ultra Orthodox Jewish Attackers of IDF Officer Trending
 

Yes, There's A Grateful Dead Album Entirely in Hebrew

April 24, 2015 | By Caitlin Marceau
Yes, There's A Grateful Dead Album Entirely in Hebrew

Released by Sagol 59 and Ami Yaris, "The Promised Land" features songs from the revered jam band beautifully translated into Hebrew

Read More

Ban Ki-Moon Eats Shakshuka On Israel Independence Day

April 24, 2015 | By Caitlin Marceau
Ban Ki-Moon Eats Shakshuka On Israel Independence Day

An exploration into Israeli food, and maybe the first step towards peace, Ban Ki-Moon tries shakshuka for the first time

Read More

WATCH: Tel Aviv Zookeeper Captures Awesome Footage of Animals Drinking

April 24, 2015 | By Maya Yarowsky, NoCamels
WATCH: Tel Aviv Zookeeper Captures Awesome Footage of Animals Drinking

Elad Hershkowitz captured the unique footage by placing a GoPro camera at the bottom of animals' water troughs to get a closer look at how giraffes, lions, rhinos and lemurs relieve their parched pallets

Read More

First Nations Actors Storm Off the Set of Adam Sandler's Western Spoof

April 24, 2015 | By Caitlin Marceau
First Nations Actors Storm Off the Set of Adam Sandler's Western Spoof

Despite concerns raised by actors on the set, and even following a walkout by cast, Netflix and Sandler stand by the 'The Ridiculous Six'

Read More

Poland Wants Mattel To Recall 'Apples To Apples' Game For Labelling Them As Nazis

April 24, 2015 | By Caitlin Marceau
Poland Wants Mattel To Recall 'Apples To Apples' Game For Labelling Them As Nazis

A card which refers to their country as "Nazi Poland" during the second World War has been deemed offensive and demeaning to Poland

Read More

Former New York State Governor and Possible Presidential Candidate Has Longstanding Jewish Ties

April 24, 2015 | By Jacob Kamaras, JNS.org
Former New York State Governor and Possible Presidential Candidate Has Longstanding Jewish Ties

George Pataki has a strong history with Jewish voters for a Republican

Read More

Israel: One Of The Happiest Countries On Earth

April 24, 2015 | By Caitlin Marceau
Israel: One Of The Happiest Countries On Earth

Israel takes the 11th spot on the UN's annual happiness report, coming out on top of countries like the U.S. and U.K.

Read More

Netanyahu Condemns Ultra Orthodox Jewish Attackers of IDF Officer

April 24, 2015 | By Kobi Nachshoni
Netanyahu Condemns Ultra Orthodox Jewish Attackers of IDF Officer

'They are lawbreakers. Service in the IDF is a source of pride,' the Israeli PM stated

Read More

More Headlines