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YIWH 63rd Anniversary Dinner

Sunday, April 29, 2018 • 14 Iyyar 5778

6:00 PM - 10:00 PMOld Westbury Hebrew Congregation

Dinner Tribute Video


Dinner Program / Speeches / Awards Presentations

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December a year ago, we were all shocked to hear that our beloved Rabbi Kelemer was the victim of a serious hit and run accident.  We reacted as the Rabbi’s talmidim and talmidot, and with guidance from Rabbi Goller, we banded together, we cried, we davened and said tehillim, we learned, we upped our observance of mitzvot, more tzedakah, perhaps a little quieter in shul, we did everything we could.  However, there were those among us who acted swiftly, to literally save the Rabbi and save our world, and put him on the road to recovery.  For this we must make known our sincere Hakaras Hatov.  And so it is with great pleasure that we announce the honorees for the Young Israel’s 63rd Anniversary  Dinner as we will honor several individuals and institutions that played critical roles in the Rabbis Refuah.

The Young Israel is proud to recognize and honor NYU Winthrop Hospital, its fine doctors, nurses and staff by presenting the Excellence in Community Service Award to President John Collins.  Under Pres Collins leadership, NYU Winthrop consistently provides the highest level of care to all patients and Rabbi Kelemer was no exception.  Not only did the hospital care for the Rabbi’s critical condition, they also provided ‘care’ for our members who streamed to the hospital to visit, daven and be close to the Rabbi and the Rebbetzin.

The Young Israel is proud to honor with our Woman of Valor AwardSophia Dawkins, a healthcare professional, a stranger to us, and a religious woman in her own right who said it was “by the Grace of G-d”, that she was driving by only seconds after the Rabbi was struck.  Sophia was quick to act as she had been trained and with the innate instincts of a caregiver.  She shielded the Rabbi from further harm by using her car as a protective barrier.  She administered first aid, and she had the presence of mind to locate the Rabbi’s cell phone and redial the last conversation, to reach someone who would likely care about the injured and pious man in the street.  Only later was Sophia informed that the man she assisted was actually cared for by thousands.  Sophia was speechless.

And our two of our very own, the Young Israel is proud to present the Family of the Year Award to Dr. Abraham and Sara Peller.  Abe and Sara have always shown community leadership, in learning and davening, in yidishkeit and tzeddakah, love of Israel, and respect for the Rabbinate.  And Abe is known throughout the community as a physician who will assist anyone at any time, they truly exemplify what it is to be a baal and baalas chesed.  And “by the grace of G-d” as Sophia would say, on the night in question Dr. Peller was in the hospital – though he was not originally scheduled to be; and so he was an integral part of the medical team that cared for the Rabbi that night, and with privileges in the hospital, he remained a familiar face, a source of comfort and strength for the Rabbi, and his family during the time he was cared for at NYU Winthrop.


כל המקיים נפש אחת מישראל כאילו קיים עולם מלה
"Anyone who saves a life.. it is as if he saved an entire world..."


Our Rabbi, and our world was saved by the people we are honoring.  This is our opportunity to express to them our appreciation, our Hakaras Hatov, for the roles they played, individually and collectively, that made our shul whole again.  Be sure to tell your friends and neighbors as this celebration is beyond the walls of the Young Israel, it is for all of West Hempstead, and beyond that as well. 

The dinner is set for Sunday April 29th, at the Old Westbury Hebrew Congregation.  The committee has been formed, they are hard at work preparing, be on the lookout for more details over the next few weeks and be sure to block the date, April 29th, on your calendar.  Looking forward to seeing all of you then...


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Mon, October 15 2018 6 Cheshvan 5779