For 35 years, Idahoans have remembered victims of the Holocaust since the first statewide proclamation in 1982 by Idaho Governor John Evans. Today, at the Lincoln Auditorium in the state capitol building, Yom Ha'Shoah was observed. The ceremony included proclamations, candle lighting, music from local choral groups, and more.
After the Governor's proclamation of the day was read, a child read from his award-winning essay for the Wilma Landman Loeb Holocaust Remembrance Essay Contest.
"After having seen pictures of holocaust victims," said contest winner Jordan Hennessy. "Seeing these images made me sick to my stomach. I thought to myself: How could a country do this to millions of human beings based solely on a different culture?"
"It's important to remember the Holocaust," says Rabbi Dan Fink of Congregation Ahavath Beth Israel, because "... those who the Nazis were trying to reduce to numbers, we can accord them the dignity of indeed, they were [in fact people with names], and they did make a difference in their lifetimes. And the world is a better place for them having been here even if, alas, for too short a time."
He added that the Holocaust has lessons that are useful for today: "It's much easier to nip that kind of hatred that lead to the Holocaust in the bud, to stop it after it starts to flourish and starts to invade the body populous."