It was my father Jack Veffer’s (Yaakov ben Yonah) yahrtzeit this week on the 20th of Adar. He survived the Holocaust by hiding in Holland with his parents and five siblings for three years. After the war he moved to Canada and built a great life for himself and his family.
When I was a young adult and decided to make aliyah. I remember my father saying to me, “Where you are born is an ‘accident,’ you have to find your own place in the world.” Anyone considering aliyah should take those words of wisdom to heart.
My grandmother, Sara Veffer wrote a book called “Hidden for 1000 Days” about the family’s miraculous experiences in the war. In 1961, Ralph Edwards of This is Your Life did a television show about my family’s story. A replica of their hiding place was built on stage and the family was tearfully reunited with the Dutch underground workers and the family who hid them.
I decided to watch it this week, so I could see my young 35 year old father walking and talking again (he’s seated at the table 3rd from the left with the bowtie in the picture below). At the beginning of the film, it mentions the show was recorded on March 8, 1961 – exactly 51 years ago. For some reason I decided to check the hebrew calendar, and was chilled to discover that I was watching my father speak to me on Adar 20, 5721 – what would eventually become his Yahrtzeit day.
Enjoy the show… My sister and I are converting the book “Hidden for 1000 Days” to e-book format. Let me know if you are interested in a copy.