Voice in service

Charlestein is an honorary member of the IDF Medical Corps and proudly wears her uniform when traversing the country to thank, salute, comfort, hug and sing for soldiers.

October 6, 2015 09:28
 Benny Gantz

Ritasue Charlestein with former IDF general chief of staff’s Gabi Ashkenazi (left) and Benny Gantz. (photo credit: Courtesy)


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When Ritasue Charlestein sang “Hatikva” in Majdanek, the former concentration camp, before 250 Israeli career army officers on an IDF mission to Poland in 2010, it was just one of several life-changing moments that she looks back on as if in a dream.

For more than 30 years, this American storyteller and folksinger has put Israeli soldiers at the top of her playlist. And since 2005, when she moved to Jerusalem from Toronto, she has spent virtually every day in a different city, entertaining hospitalized soldiers in cooperation with the IDF.


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