From the Wrens to the Weizmann

The Bergers’ aliya, in the wake of the raid on Entebbe, was an auspicious one.

Joan Berg
Joan Berg was 55, and her husband, Maurice, was 60, by the time they made aliya from their native England. Moving to Israel had been a longtime dream. Yet, although their daughter, Marion, made the move as a young adult, circumstances of their lives kept them in Croydon – he running a successful menswear business and she an antiques dealer – until one extraordinary day not long after the 1976 Israeli raid on Entebbe, to rescue hostages from a hijacked plane, changed everything.

Joan relates the story while sitting in an easy chair in her apartment in the Talpiot neighborhood of Jerusalem, recalling the details as if they’d happened yesterday. It all started when she purchased a beautiful antique sewing box that was missing a pair of “swordfish scissors” used for fine needlework. She asked around and was told she might find such a pair in an old shop in Southend.

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