Jewish War Veterans national meeting in Tidewater

by | Aug 31, 2012 | Other News

Jewish War Veterans MeetingIt began with a chance phone call to Temple Beth El and the question, “Where can a nice group of Jewish War Veterans have a kosher diner in Norfolk?”

Several people put their minds together and suggested a dinner hosted at the Simon Family Jewish Community Center.

Mike London, JWV dinner chair, suggested inviting the Tidewater Jewish community to the night honoring Jewish War Veterans of the Vietnam War and all Jewish Veterans. Members from the newly formed Military Appreciation Committee at Temple Beth El and Military Support & Outreach Committee at Ohef Sholom Temple accepted and participated, as well as several local Veterans.

Anticipation built in the Cardo waiting for the arrival of the JCC Camp busses, lent for the evening to transport the convention attendees from the Sheraton in Downtown Norfolk to the Campus. Welcomes and greetings and big smiles were everywhere as the visitors enjoyed the local hospitality.

Before dinner, Rabbi Jeffery Arnowitz led prayers at the Virginia Jewish War Memorial at the Sandler Family Campus. It was a solemn and proud moment when the shofar was blown, followed by the playing of Taps.

To add to the special night, London made sure the dinner tables where evenly mixed with JWV and community members, which left everyone with a greater appreciation and understanding of the diversity and depth of involvement of Jews in the military.

This was the first time a local community interacted and participated in such a way with the JWV convention. Many said this was the most memorable night they could remember during a gathering. Glenn A. Saucier, facility director, The Reba & Sam Sandler Family Campus of the Tidewater Jewish Community, and the Campus staff created a beautiful patriotic setting and provided wonderful food.

The JWV Convention expects to return to Tidewater in several years, and the community looks forward to opening its doors again to welcome and thank these Jewish heroes.

If interested in participating in the military appreciation committees, contact Temple Beth El at or Ohef Sholom at

by Fay Silverman