Several attended Fort Huachuca’s 2013 Days of Remembrance Observance on Tuesday hosted by the U.S. Army Intelligence Center of Excellence and Fort Huachuca Military Equal Opportunity Team at Fitch Auditorium in Alvarado Hall.
According to Sgt. 1st Class Michael Wood, Installation Equal Opportunity advisor, the crowd was a nice surprise.
This year’s theme, “Never Again: Heeding the Warning Signs,” focused on using the Holocaust as a learning tool to eliminate present day genocides and prevent them from happening in the future. Audience members watched a short video released by the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum on the warning signs which had been ignored leading up to the Holocaust.
This year’s keynote speaker was Dr. Samuel Caron, child psychologist from Raymond W. Bliss Army Health Center. He is also president and lay leader at Temple Kol Hamidbar, a reform Jewish congregation in Sierra Vista.
“As long as we teach and encourage hate, genocide will continue,” he said. “As long as we ignore the warning signs and don’t take action, it will not only continue, but continue basically unpunished.”
In addition to Caron, other guests of honor included seven Holocaust survivors. During the event, each survivor came up to the stage to light a candle.
Nine candles were lit in total. The first six represented the 6 million Jews who died in the Holocaust, while the seventh candle represented the 5 million non-Jews who died. The eighth candle was dedicated those who spoke out against the Nazis. The final candle signified the liberation of the concentration camps.
A recitation of names called out the major concentration camps and the number of Jewish deaths during the candle lighting ceremony.
Gail Wallen, Ph.D., Holocaust program educator, said, “Recent research has shown that the numbers of camps has expanded dramatically. The numbers now listed are between 40,000 and 42,500 camps that held Jews and other prisoners of the Nazis as well.”
The Days of Remembrance is an annual, national and civic commemoration dedicated to Holocaust victims. Ceremonies are conducted nation-wide during a one week period designated by the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council. This year’s National Days of Remembrance took place April 7-14.