Irving Roth Enabled Students to “ Adopt ” Survivors
MR . IRVING ROTH , A SURVIVOR OF THE HOLOCAUST who made it his life ’ s mission to ensure that the individual histories of his fellow survivors would be perpetuated by today ’ s children , was niftar last spring at the age of 91 .
Mr . Roth founded the Adopt-A- Survivor project as a vehicle for students to meet and interview Holocaust survivors and commit to publicly retell those individuals ’ stories in the year 2045 , which will be a century after the liberation of Auschwitz .
Adopt-A-Survivor was introduced to Yeshiva Darchei Torah in 2011 . Since that time , its eighth grade talmidim have been privileged to meet , interview , and “ adopt ” elderly survivors of the Holocaust with a diversity of experiences , learning about their lives before , during , and after World War II .
In recent years , the journey would culminate at an annual event at the Yeshiva — with several of these survivors as honored guests in the front row — at which the eighth grade boys would narrate multimedia presentations , complete with PowerPoint and video elements , illustrating each survivor ’ s story .
In addition , the perimeter of the room would be arrayed with fullcolor dioramas that the boys would build from scratch , each depicting one or more scenes from that survivor ’ s harrowing experience .
“ The introduction of the Adopt-A-Survivor project into our yeshiva has undoubtedly brought home the history of the Holocaust to our talmidim ,” says Rabbi Moshe Leff , principal of Yeshiva Darchei Torah ’ s middle school . “ Thanks to Mr . Roth ’ s vision and tenacity , the stories of these survivors are not merely text in a book but real , living truths that our students have been empowered to retell the world .”
Mr . Roth , who grew up in the town of Humenne , located in modern-day Slovakia , had just recently been in communication with Rabbi Leff about introducing this year ’ s eighth grade students to the program .
“ Although Mr . Roth is sadly no longer with us ,” Rabbi Leff concludes , “ we will continue his legacy — as a zchus for his neshama and because this project , of history and memory , is a vital component of our boys ’ educational experience .” Yehi Zichro Baruch .
IRVING ROTH A ” H , FOUNDER OF THE ADOPT-A- SURVIVOR PROGRAM , SHOWING YESHIVA DARCHEI TORAH STUDENTS THE NUMBERS ON HIS ARM , OCTOBER 2019
View a video about the 2020 Adopt-A-Survivor event at Darchei Torah at Darchei . org / IrvingRoth
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