Monday, Jan. 27 marks the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz. To mark this anniversary and to commemorate U.N. International Holocaust Remembrance Day, the Jewish Federation of the Greater San Gabriel and Pomona Valleys and the City of Pasadena are holding Every Person Has a Name. This 25-hour vigil will be held on the steps of Pasadena City Hall on Saturday, Jan. 25 – Sunday, Jan. 26, 2020.
The program will begin with a commemoration ceremony at 7 p.m. featuring speeches from elected officials — including Pasadena Mayor Terry Tornek, LA County Supervisor Kathryn Barger, Congresswoman Judy Chu, State Senator Anthony Portantino — local clergy, and a performance by the Jewish Federation’s Jewish Youth Orchestra.
The program will then transition into the reading of the names of people who perished during the Holocaust. Holocaust survivors and children of Holocaust survivors from the community will begin by reading the names of their family members who were murdered during the Holocaust, to then be followed by volunteers from the community reading names.
“With every passing day, survivors are dying, and with them go their stories … my concern is that the memories will be dying as well,” explains Jason Moss, Jewish Federation’s executive director. “An event such as this allows the community to come together and to remember that each person that was killed was someone who lived and whose life was cut short. While our readers and those who listen may not know the people they are reading the names for; by saying their names aloud … they are remembered.”
The event is open to the public. Volunteers are still needed to read names during 30-minute blocks, especially between 1– 4:30 a.m. People can sign up by visiting the Jewish Federation’s website or by calling (626) 445-0810.