President of the Republic of Lithuania

Saviors of Jews – an icon of humanness for future generations

2013-09-23

Monday, September 23, Vilnius - On the occasion of the National Memorial Day for the Genocide of Lithuanian Jews, President Dalia Grybauskaitė awarded the Life Saving Cross to those who placing their families and themselves in grave danger, saved Jewish people from the genocide carried out by the Nazis during World War II.

"Most of those we honor today are no longer among us. They helped save the lives of their neighbors, friends and total strangers who were doomed to death. These brave people saved the Jews, gave them shelter, shared bread, and were mothers and fathers to Jewish orphans. They became an icon of humanness to be followed by all of us - a beacon that we must carry on the path to tomorrow," the President said.

According to the President, the tragedy of the Jewish people is also our tragedy. A grim and terrible reality can never stay in the past - it must forever remain in our memory. This memory, the President noted, unites us and inspires to be committed human beings, good citizens of our state, true friends and neighbors.

The Cross of the Knight of the Order for Merits to Lithuania was awarded to Faina Kukliansky, chair of the Lithuanian Jewish Community, and Markas Zingeris - writer, publicist, Director of the Vilna Gaon State Jewish Museum - for bringing together the Lithuanian Jewish community and preserving the heritage of Lithuanian Jews.

The Life Saving Cross by a presidential decree was conferred on 47 persons.

Copyright - Dž. G. Barysaitė 

Press Service of the President

Last updated 2013.09.23 11:08

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