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Days of Remembrance in Alexandria
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Days of Remembrance in Alexandria

City ceremony honors Holocaust victims.

City Councilman Mo Seifeldein lights one of six candles of a candelabrum as state Sen. Dick Saslaw (D-35) looks on during the 32nd annual Days of Remembrance of the Victims of the Holocaust Ceremony of Commemoration May 2 in Market Square.

City Councilman Mo Seifeldein lights one of six candles of a candelabrum as state Sen. Dick Saslaw (D-35) looks on during the 32nd annual Days of Remembrance of the Victims of the Holocaust Ceremony of Commemoration May 2 in Market Square. Photo by Janet Barnett/Gazette Packet

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Mayor Justin Wilson presents a proclamation commemorating the Days of Remembrance of the Victims of the Holocaust to Rabbi Steven Rein of Agudas Achim Congregation.

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U.S. Holocaust Museum historian and curator Dr. Edna Friedberg, second from right, joins local religious leaders at the Days of Remembrance for the Victims of the Holocaust Ceremony of Commemoration May 2 at Market Square. With Friedberg are: Rabbi David Spinrad, Beth El Hebrew Congregation; Pastor Grace Han, Trinity United Methodist Church; Hazzan Elisheva Dienstfrey and Rabbi Steven Rein, Agudas Achim Congregation; and Cantor Jason Kaufmann, Beth El Hebrew Congregation.

Local religious and city leaders united May 2 in Market Square to participate in the 32nd annual Ceremony of Commemoration as part of the National Days of Remembrance for the Victims of the Holocaust.

The annual ceremony is part of the weeklong commemoration of the National Days of Remembrance, which took place this year from April 28 through May 4.

Dr. Edna Friedberg, a historian and curator at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, served as the featured speaker. Friedberg was joined by Mayor Justin Wilson and leaders of the faith community in making remarks during the ceremony.

Wilson presented a proclamation commemorating the Days of Remembrance of the Victims of the Holocaust to Rabbi Steven Rein of Agudas Achim Congregation before he and members of City Council participated in the lighting of a candelabrum.

The candelabrum used in the ceremony was donated to the city by the late Charlene Schiff and her husband Ed Schiff. Charlene Schiff was the sole survivor of the Holocaust in her family and the candelabrum was donated in memory of her parents and sister, as well as the six million Jews and five million others who perished in the Holocaust.

The Days of Remembrance of the Victims of the Holocaust was designated by Congress in 1980. In 1988, then-mayor Jim Moran initiated the city’s Ceremony of Remembrance, with Alexandria becoming the first municipality in the nation to have a formal observance of the Holocaust.

For more information on the Holocaust, visit www.ushmm.org.