May 12, 2008 — Over 1,000 students in festive blue and white dress crowded Lamport Auditorium on the Wilf Campus for Yeshiva University’s annual Yom Hazikaron (Remembrance Day) and Yom Ha’atzmaut (Independence Day) ceremony. This year’s event, which took place Wednesday night, May 7, 2008, featured a performance by the YU Acapella Group, and a memorial candle lighting by students who have served in the Israeli Defense Force and Sheirut Le’umi (National Service Program).

Dr. Norman Lamm, Chancellor of Yeshiva University, shared his memories of being a Yeshiva College senior during Israel’s War of Independence in 1948 and President Richard M. Joel recited Kel Maleh Rachamim [memorial service for the souls of the departed] in memory of the fallen soldiers and victims of terror.

Benjamin Krasna, Israel’s deputy consul general in New York, encouraged the audience to appreciate the miracle of Israel’s existence and to continue their crucial role in supporting the country in every way possible. Rabbi Shalom Rosner, a rosh yeshiva at Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary (RIETS), who is moving to Israel next year, and Rabbi Meir Goldwicht, the Joel and Maria Finkle Visiting Israeli Rosh Yeshiva at RIETS, spoke at the event as well.

Following a special celebratory evening prayer the students marched buoyantly to the Max Stern Athletic Center Gymnasium for a holiday chagigah [festive celebration]. Live music and Israeli food accompanied the celebration.