March of Living to resume following two-year hiatus

The March of the Living is due to take place in Poland on April 28, 2022, to mark Israel’s national Holocaust Remembrance Day, Yom HaShoah.

 Eitan Neishlos – 3rd generation Holocaust survivor, Nobuki Sugihara – 2nd generation Righteous Among the Nation, Carolin Hohnecker – 3rd generation granddaughter of Nazi SS officers, Eve Kugler – 1st generation Holocaust Survivor speak at The Jerusalem Post London Conference (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
Eitan Neishlos – 3rd generation Holocaust survivor, Nobuki Sugihara – 2nd generation Righteous Among the Nation, Carolin Hohnecker – 3rd generation granddaughter of Nazi SS officers, Eve Kugler – 1st generation Holocaust Survivor speak at The Jerusalem Post London Conference
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)

At a special event held Wednesday at the House of Lords before Thursday’s Jerusalem Post London Conference, the International March of the Living announced it would resume its annual processional in person following a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 global pandemic. Organizers noted that, under the shadow of war in Ukraine, it would take place with reduced capacity and would likely be the last March to include Holocaust survivors, with only eight scheduled to participate this year.

“In the last few years, the International March of the Living and the world as a whole have lost many Holocaust survivors,” said President Phyllis Greenberg Heideman and Chairman Dr. Shmuel Rosenman. “This is almost the last opportunity to march alongside Holocaust survivors. It is our responsibility to carry the torch of their memory even in the face of the tragic ongoing war in Ukraine.”

This year’s March will focus on the importance of passing the responsibility of Holocaust remembrance and education to the next generation – the grandchildren of those who endured the systematic annihilation of more than 6 million Jewish victims and those committed to remembering the past as a teaching tool for the future. Ninety-one-year-old Holocaust survivor Eve Kugler, who has participated in the March of the Living for the past ten years, said, “More than ever, it is clear that words like ‘Never Again’ are not enough. How much worse will it be when the survivors are no more than a distant memory?”

Eitan Neishlos, grandson of Holocaust survivor Tamar Zisserman, who survived the death pits of Latvia thanks to a Christian family subsequently recognized as Righteous Among the Nations, will join the March of the Living to lead a journey of remembrance and responsibility among members of the third generation: “Out of great respect to those who perished, and tremendous esteem for the survivors, today the responsibility is passed to members of the third generation. From now we will preserve their memory and demand of ourselves that ‘Never Means Never’,” he said. “This duty is not a burden; it is a privilege,” he stressed.

The March of the Living is due to take place in Poland on April 28, 2022, to mark Israel’s national Holocaust Remembrance Day, Yom HaShoah. The survivors will be joined by dignitaries, community leaders and representatives of the third generation, the grandchildren of survivors, who will be taking up the torch of remembrance. More than 2,000 participants, both Jewish and non-Jewish, are expected to march. Most will come from Europe and some from Israel, including a global leadership delegation from KKL (Keren Kayemet L’Yisrael); a delegation from the Jewish Agency for Israel; Eitan Neishlos, the founder of the Neishlos Foundation and representative of the third generation of Holocaust survivors; Jerusalem Mayor Moshe Lion, who will lead the city’s delegation; a senior delegation from Israel’s Aerospace Industry and more. 

 Eitan Neishlos, representing the third generation of Holocaust survivors, together with first generation survivor Eve Kugler in London, at Jerusalem Post London Convention. (credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST) Eitan Neishlos, representing the third generation of Holocaust survivors, together with first generation survivor Eve Kugler in London, at Jerusalem Post London Convention. (credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)

The March will conclude with the traditional ceremony at the remains of the Auschwitz-Birkenau crematorium, attended by former Israeli Chief Rabbi Yisrael Meir Lau, IDF Cantor Shai Abramson, Holocaust survivors and Israeli singer Harel Skaat. Torches of remembrance will be lit in memory of the six million Jewish women, children and men who perished.