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Wednesday, December 21, 2016

"The story of Yankel the Baker..."'Melinda Kontos' (Source of this touching story)

 Please welcome our newest guest blogger!
Melinda Kontos lives in Amherst,  NY.
 She is a retired music teacher and  professional violinist.
 She lives with her husband, Ulysses and her bulldog Maxwell
Maxwell the pride and joy
of the Konto's family!

Original author,Michael J. Nadel
The story of Yankel the Baker

In Crown Heights, there was a Jew, Yankel, who owned a bakery. He survived the camps. He once said, “You know why it is that I’m alive today? I was a kid, just a teenager at the time. We were on the train, in a boxcar, being taken to Auschwitz. Night came and it was freezing, deathly cold, in that boxcar. 

The Germans would leave the cars on the side of the tracks overnight, sometimes for days on end without any food, and of course, no blankets to keep us warm,” he said. “Sitting next to me was an older Jew – this beloved elderly Jew - from my hometown I recognized, but I had never seen him like this. He was shivering from head to toe, and looked terrible. So I wrapped my arms around him and began rubbing him, to warm him up. I rubbed his arms, his legs, his face, his neck. I begged him to hang on. All night long; I kept the man warm this way. I was tired, I was freezing cold myself, my fingers were numb, but I didn’t stop rubbing the heat on to this man’s body. Hours and hours went by this way. Finally, night passed, morning came, and the sun began to shine. There was some warmth in the cabin, and then I looked around the car to see some of the other Jews in the car. To my horror, all I could see were frozen bodies, and all I could hear was a deathly silence.

Nobody else in that cabin made it through the night – they died from the frost. Only two people survived: the old man and me… The old man survived because somebody kept him
warm; I survived because I was warming somebody else…”

Let me tell you the secret of Judaism. When you warm other people’s hearts, you remain warm yourself. When you seek to support, encourage and inspire others; then you discover support, encouragement and inspiration in your own life as well. That, my friends, is “Judaism 101”.

Man walks away from helping woman stuck in snow because of Trump bumper sticker on her vehicle...

Hana Hou, Encore


KimoRosen said...

Not only Judaism 101, but life 101! Thanks for sharing Mel!

Glenn Mickens-by email said...

OUTSTANDING story, Melinda and one that should be an example for all who are lucky enough to read it.

Melinda Kontos said...

You are welcome!!! Beautiful post as well, Jim!!

Judith said...

so true, great story