The future of the Jewish War Veterans lies in its youth, so it is only proper that we hear from a “younger” member. Meet Richard Pape, an unassuming man who said he had nothing interesting to offer about himself.

Pape was a military brat. His father served for 16 years including during Desert Storm with the U.S. Army. He also has an uncle who served in Vietnam with Marine Force Recon. Like many army brats, he grew up in a lot of places, graduating high school in Georgia.

He followed his family background and naturally went into the military. He trained at Lackland Air Force Base (AFB) in Texas to become an Air Transport Specialist. His four-and-a-half-year service took him to places like Altus AFB in Oklahoma and Yokota Air Base in Japan.

After his time in the Air Force he used his training to secure a job in Oman working cargo destined for Iraq and Afghanistan. Pape worked here for seven years, during which he connected with members of the British Special Air Service, he cannot speak much about it but he clearly enjoyed that experience.

Pape earned a degree in Fish and Wildlife from the American Military University where he developed a passion for raising fish. After Oman, he moved to Georgia and Alaska working at fish hatcheries.

Pape now works for a company in Minneapolis, Minnesota (MN) in accounts payable and his interests have led him to seek a career as a Certified Public Accountant.

Pape is a long-time member of the American Legion. In 2020, Lou Michaels, then Department Commander for MN, and also a member of the American Legion, asked Pape to join JWV and so he did. Pape enjoys that JWV is smaller than American Legion as he finds it easier to get things done.

Pape is Commander of Post 331 in Minneapolis and also Vice Commander of the Department of MN. Pape is just what JWV needs for our future – a young veteran willing to accept positions of responsibility.

Pape has been married for 5 years and enjoys spending time with his wife and dog while hiking, cooking, and organizing events. He helps with cookouts at the Sholom Home, a Jewish Retirement Home in St. Louis Park, MN.

Volume 77. Number 3. 2023

By Larry Jasper, National Editor

Do you know what a patron is? Article V of our Constitution says “Any supporter of JWV that upholds, reflects, and pursues the values of JWV may become a Patron.” It is further stated that “Patrons are not members of JWV…”
So what is the motivation for a person to become a Patron? That question was answered by Steve Falkowitz of Post 373.

Falkowitz stated that his family has a history of service to our nation. He had three great-uncles who all served in World War II, he has cousins who served, and his father served for six years during the early years of the Vietnam War. He, however, did not serve.

Falkowitz became a patron because he was asked, just as his dad became a Life Member of JWV because he was asked. His dad was originally a member of Post 212 in Wilkes Barre, PA where he was also active in the Jewish Community and served as President of the local JCC.

Falkowitz’ s motivation for being a part of JWV was to give back to his community and nation for all it has given him. He believes in supporting his community and Jewish organizations and causes. His post actively supports the veterans at the local VA Hospital and other veterans’ organizations in the area. He said, “giving is a Jewish thing, it is Jewish to support your community and perform mitzvot.”

When first asked to become a patron he was reluctant as he did not serve. He wondered what he had to contribute. “I have no knowledge of the military,” he said. He felt being a part of the post was like “skipping the line.” That all quickly changed.

Upon becoming a patron he became involved in many post activities, including learning drill and ceremonies to participate in the post Color Guard. He has carried flags and performed rifle drills. He felt it was a true honor to carry the nation’s flag. He brought with him his skills as a graphic designer and almost immediately began helping with the monthly newsletter and other print matter. He currently serves as the Post Adjutant and has also become the Department Adjutant.

His wife Tracy also became a patron. Tracy is an attorney and serves as the Post Judge Advocate.

Falkowitz feels the JWV does so much good in giving back to other veterans and the community, a value his dad instilled in him at a young age. He has a great deal of love for his dad and brought him on board as a member of Post 373.

For Falkowitz it has become a family affair.

His aspirations are to see the country stick to its core principals. He feels it is time to bring the country back together and end the divisiveness.

A patron is someone who has not served in uniform, but wishes to serve those who served. Falkowitz is a fine example of what a patron should be.

Volume 77. Number 2. 2023

Irving Locker recently turned 98. On June 6, 1944 Locker was one of the 156,000 soldiers to storm the beaches of Normandy, landing at Utah Beach. Six months later, Locker was a 19-year-old Staff Sergeant with the 116th AAA Gun Battalion of the 1st Army’s 7th Corps.

He found himself in the Ardennes Forest during the brutally cold winter of 1944-1945.

Locker said, “When we went into the Battle of the Bulge, they had us surrounded on three sides. We didn’t have ammunition, food, or anything. I had to send my own sergeant into our own mortuaries where our own dead people were and take the boots and clothing off of them to bring back.”

Locker played a part in the liberation of the Gardelegen Concentration Camp, about 100 miles west of Berlin, an experience he will never forget.

Once Locker reached Berlin, he took a swastika flag from a wall and had some of his men sign it. It is one of many mementos he still has from the war.

After the war Locker, made a life with his sweetheart Bernice. They have been married for 74 years. Unfortunately, they have outlived both of their sons. His wife Bernice said, “We’ve had our ups and downs, but we’ve always been there for each other. When we lost our sons, I don’t think either of us would have survived if we didn’t have each other to lean on.” She said her husband does not let tragedy define him.

Locker has made a life of retelling his story. He has made YouTube videos and continues to give Power Point presentations to anyone who will listen. For 77 years he has given lectures on the war and the Holocaust everywhere from elementary school classrooms to the White House. He returned to Normandy for the 70th and 75th D-Day anniversaries.

Locker said “Too many people have no idea what we experienced. It’s important to me that this story is told after I’m gone, so people don’t forget.”

Locker is 5’2” and during one of his talks, someone asked how he survived the war. Locker answered, “I stood behind a tall guy.”

Locker is a long-time member of JWV Post 352 in The Villages, Florida.

Volume 77. Number 1. 2023

Howard Berger turned 99 in November. His father was a machine gunner in World War I. Berger was working as a salesman when WWII began, but when he noticed many factories starting to make war materials, he decided to enlist. He and his brother joined up at the same time, Berger into the Army and his brother into the Coast Guard.

Berger trained on anti-aircraft artillery at Camp Stewart, Georgia. In December 1944, he set sail on the Queen Elizabeth, heading for Scotland. By this time, he was a Staff Sergeant leading a platoon of 21 men and four halftracks.

When a V-2 rocket landed nearby, Berger said it “scared the hell” out of them. He remained in England, guarding an Italian POW camp until March of 1945, when his unit left for France.
On May 5, two days before Germany surrendered, Berger was badly burned in an accident. He was sent to Paris where he recovered from his injury. Eventually he received a job offer to join the occupation force in Vienna, Austria as an Assistant to the Class VI Officer. He later joined the entertainment branch of Army Special Services. While there, he met Dorothy, who became his beloved wife of 68 years.

Berger retired from his service-related career in 1994 and settled in Naples, Florida, where he joined JWV Post 202. He currently resides in Denver, Colorado.

Volume 77. Number 1. 2023

Murray Zolkower, Co-Commander of Post 409 in Dunedin, Florida, turned 102-years-old last month. He was honored at his favorite restaurant, Mission BBQ.

Zolkower is a World War II veteran who had his schooling interrupted by the events of WWII. He landed on Omaha Beach six weeks after D-Day. He served as a medic with the 120th Medical Battalion, 45th Division starting in France, and the unit fought its way through Nuremburg and Munich. On April 29, 1945, Zolkower found himself part of the liberation force at Dachau, an experience he knew he would never be able to erase from his memory. After the war, in 1946, he came home and married his high school sweetheart, a marriage that lasted until her passing in 2014. Zolkower finished his education, becoming a pharmacist in 1948, a career he has loved ever since. He joined JWV in 1946 and remains one of our longest serving members.

Volume 77. Number 1. 2023

By Larry Jasper

Meet Selina Kanowitz, the current Commander of the Department of New Jersey and a woman of many talents.

Kanowitz joined JWV Post 215 in Philadelphia in 1991. Prior to becoming Department Commander, she served as Junior Vice Commander, Senior Vice Commander, and Commander of Post 126 in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, and also served in parallel positions at the department level. Her father and her father-in-law were also JWV members.

Kanowitz grew up in Pennsylvania, graduated from Penn State University with a BS in Education and Pre-med and Westchester State University with a degree in Safety Ed. Her husband is an attorney and they have been married for 43 years. She has two children, a son who took two years of Army ROTC while in Penn State University, and a daughter.

Her family has a long history of military service. Her father served as a medic in World War II where he earned a Purple Heart. Also in WWII, one her uncles was a very lucky man. He was wearing a mezuzah around his neck when he was shot and fortunately the bullet hit the mezuzah and saved his life. Two of her uncles served in Korea.

When she took basic training, she was the only Jew in her unit, was dorm chief, and had the nickname Private Benjamin. After basic she served in the Air Force Reserve with the 913th Tactical Clinic, part of the 913 Combat Support Squadron, in radiology, eventually rising to be the NCOIC of the section. She did her annual training at major hospitals around the United States, England, Germany, and Japan, helping in different areas of the hospitals. She also took survival training in Texas. She was activated during Operation Desert Storm but remained stateside at McGuire AFB in New Jersey. 350 members of her unit were deployed worldwide, and all returned safely.

During her career she had a couple of opportunities for a Direct Commission but each time she was bumped for unexplained reasons. She retired in 1998 as an E-7, having served over 21 years.

Kanowitz, in her current JWV position, has goals to bring in more members, especially female veterans, increase the visibility of the command, increase community outreach, reduce antisemitism, and travel the state to meet with the governor and members of the department. She feels that a personal touch is a great way to improve retention, build unit cohesiveness, and give the members a good feeling about the leadership.

Kanowitz has been a figure skater for 30 years, likes horseback riding, a pastime for which she won a blue ribbon in jumping, and loves her 39-year-old red-lored amazon parrot. She also loves languages and travel.

She feels the military gave her opportunities that she would not have had otherwise. Her desire is to educate others so they too can gain those opportunities.

Volume 76. Number 4. 2022

By Ken Greenberg, National Executive Director

Former Deputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs (VA) Tom Bowman participated in an advocacy session during the 2022 National Convention.
During the session, National ExecuBy Larry Jasper, National Editor

Meet Dr. Ken Hartman, a man of many talents, from humble beginnings.

Hartman is the son of a Holocaust survivor. His father, Paul, was liberated by a soldier, and he fostered a lifelong respect for the military. He came to America as a refugee.
Hartman’s parents taught him that the privilege and freedom in America were so unique and precious, he should never take them for granted. This inspired him to join ROTC in college and to serve as an Army officer.

Hartman graduated and served mostly in armor and military police units from 1980 until 1989, fulfilling his desire to do something for his country.

After his service, he went on to earn a master’s degree and a Ph.D. He served several decades as a university professor, senior academic administrator, consultant, and university president.
Hartman wrote numerous books and scholarly publications and is an active presenter at industry conferences. He was also the author of a nationally syndicated newspaper column and was a technology reporter for an NBC affiliate in Philadelphia.

In 2009 he found his real passion. It always troubled Hartman that when high school graduates went off to college there was a lot of fanfare, but graduates who went into the military were largely ignored. He founded Our Community Salutes (OCS), a non-profit organization with the motto, “The First to Say Thank You.”

OCS is dedicated to honoring graduating high school seniors and their parents who made the commitment to serve their country. OCS had a humble beginning in Vorhees, New Jersey, where a facility was rented, and recruiters brought their inductees for a dinner and salute to them and their families.

Today, OCS ceremonies are held throughout the country (including Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands). Over 250,000 high school seniors have been honored since 2009, with each receiving the 96-page OCS pocket-guide to the nation’s founding documents, as well as an OCS challenge coin.

Hartman has been a member of JWV Post 126 in Cherry Hill, New Jersey for six years. In 2020, the Department of New Jersey awarded OCS its Organization of the Year Award.
If you are interested in learning how to support OCS, contact Dr. Hartman at

Hartman lives in Cherry Hill, New Jersey with his wife Marti and has two adult children.

Volume 76. Number 3. 2022

As a Jewish boy from New York, my parents were a bit surprised when I went into the Army in the late 1960s. There was a war going on. I never let my faith affect my work. I did well, retiring for the second time in 2009.

I had several occurrences which I would like to share with you. None spectacular, but interesting.

I served in Vietnam in several capacities. At one point I was an advisor in a remote village. One day a month I could go to the province capital for supplies. Yom Kippur was coming up soon and I was very worried. Even before I turned 13, I fasted for the entire holiday. My grandfather was Orthodox and we would sit and talk during the breaks of the day-long prayers. I never considered the idea of not fasting. However, in Vietnam, I had already lost over 30 pounds and almost exclusively had to eat Vietnamese food. I was not sure what to do. Fortunately, I found the II Corps Rabbi. He explained to me that I did not have to fast as the lack of food and water would endanger my safety and the safety of others. G-d did not want this. I still felt a bit guilty drinking the local water.

I have been awarded two German decorations, the paratrooper badge and a shooting award, as well as Egyptian paratrooper’s badge. While the Germans treated me very professionally, my arrival in Egypt was different. When I arrived, my ID card and dog tags were inspected. My religion is marked on my dog tags. While I had the option of obtaining dogs tags with another faith marked on them, I thought of how many Jewish people were killed for not renouncing their faith. There was no way I would. It was tense for a few days, but the Egyptians wanted my unit in their country to help train them. By the end of the assignment, I had made friends with several members of their army. I think they saw me as a solider and not an enemy.

In the mid-1990s, I received orders for Korea. My father had just passed away and I arrived a little depressed that I could not stay in the States and help my mother.

Everything that had to be done, had been done, but I knew she could have used some support. While walking around the headquarters, I saw a senior officer wearing the insignia of a rabbi. I introduced myself and asked about local services. The rabbi asked if I needed anything and I explained my father had just passed and I needed to pray daily. The next day he came by my office and presented me with a small but complete prayerbook. That small book means a lot to me. I still have it as my personal prayer book.

When I was new in the Army, I met a senior officer who was Jewish. He was very impressive, not only because of his contributions to the Army, but staying true to his faith. Decades later I was invited to his funeral at Arlington. I was honored to receive that invitation. Upon arrival, I noticed that the non-denominational chapel had been adorned with Jewish insignia. This made it a shul, and I felt it required me to wear a head covering. All I had was my beret, so I left it on. Other members of the military in the room removed their head gear as required by military rules. I did receive many strange looks from those in attendance for not removing my headgear. I paid honors to the three-star general in the best way I knew how.

You can have a successful career without problems. Just stay true to yourself and your faith.

Neerman is a Life Member of Martin Hochster Memorial Post 755 in Fort Worth, TX

Volume 76. Number 2. 2022

By Larry Jasper, National Editor

Meet Hannah Deutch. She grew up in Post-World War I Germany. Her father fought in the German Army during the war.

In her younger days she belonged to the Reichsbund Judischer Frontsoldaten, or RJF, a veterans’ organization of German-Jewish soldiers, founded in 1919, to demonstrate Jewish loyalty to the former German Empire. This was a version of the American Jewish War Veterans. They had a large gym, cafeteria, room for men to play cards, and many other activities. Hannah joined when she was only 8 years old. There were no other facilities, such as restaurants and movies that were open to German Jews at the time.

Despite her father’s death from influenza when she was just seven, Hannah said life was good until Kristallnacht on November 9, 1938. That night, mobs, spurred on by Nazi Party officials, attacked Jewish owned stores, homes, and synagogues. Hannah said, “I woke up by my bed shaking and my room was filled with light.” The light came from the burning synagogue behind her home. The night of broken glass resulted in the burning of 267 synagogues and the destruction of 7,000 Jewish businesses. More than 30,000 Jewish men were arrested and sent to concentration camps. They were released within six weeks because the camps were not ready to hold them.

The handwriting was on the wall and the lucky ones were able to get out before the Nazi’s decided to start killing Jews in concentration camps.

Hannah Deutch

Hannah was among the lucky ones. She left for England as part of the Kindertransport on February 2, 1939. After Kristallnacht, the British government allowed children to leave the Reich and come to England as refugees. “Only my mother survived,” Hannah said. “All the rest of my family perished in the camps.” Hannah was 16 years old when she arrived in England, but she started training as a nurse, and served in the British Army from 1941 until 1944.

Hannah married a Canadian soldier and at the end of 1944 she emigrated to Canada as a war bride. She had her first son in 1945. He later served in the IDF and fought in the Six-Day War. After some time in Israel, he joined his mother in New York. During the Vietnam War, that son moved to Canada after learning his IDF service did not exempt him from the draft. Hannah’s second son, born in 1947, currently lives in New Hampshire.

Hannah’s husband died in 1949 from wounds he sustained on D-Day.

Hannah came to the United States in 1962 and joined both JWV and the National Museum of American Jewish Military History. She is still an active member of both organizations.

In 1963 she joined Hadassah and B’nai B’rith. B’nai B’rith had chapters in Germany, Czechoslovakia, and Austria. Her parents belonged to the chapter in Germany, and she joined that group when many of its members moved to the United States.

For 17 years Hannah visited the United Nations on Holocaust Remembrance Day, January 27, proudly wearing her JWV cap. During those visits, she took many of her fellow JWV members with her to the event.

Through a speaker’s bureau, Hannah continues to teach about the Holocaust to synagogues and other organizations, including many school children.
Through JWV, Hannah volunteered at St. Albans VA Medical Center in Queens, New York. For 12 years she helped provide Jewish services and a Kiddush to the patients each Wednesday.

Hannah served in many leadership roles during her time in JWV, including Post Commander of Post 209, Queens County Commander, Department Chaplain, and the Chair of the National Holocaust Committee. Hannah is currently a member of Post 1 in Manhattan.

On July 3, Hannah turns 100 years young. Be sure to wish her a very happy birthday!

Volume 76. Number 1. 2022

By Larry Jasper, National Editor
Meet Major Isaac Adam Greenberg of the Department of Florida. Greenberg grew up in Tucson, Arizona, attended the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, and served ten years of active duty. During that time, he served two tours in Afghanistan. Greenberg is currently a member of the U.S. Army Reserve.

In between all that is a lot more. Greenberg is the very definition of a mensch. Greenberg attended the Tucson Hebrew Academy before going to High School and said that school is where he made life-long friends and found a love for Judaism. “I am very appreciative of my parents for giving me the opportunity to attend a school that provided me with a Judaic education that influenced my personal growth,” Greenberg said.
Greenberg also recalls his time at Sahuaro High School fondly. He served as the Senior Class Vice President and played linebacker for the Cougars. He led the state in tackles in 2000 and committed to play collegiate football in California. A trip to Washington, D.C. changed that path, and Senator John McCain nominated him to attend West Point.

Greenberg arrived at West Point just two months before September 11, 2001 to begin his military career at USMA. Everything changed for him at the Academy on that day 20 years ago. The terrorist attacks shocked the United States and put the military academy on guard. Greenberg said that at the time there were rumors about West Point as a potential target for both strategic and symbolic reasons, potentially targeting 4,000 future Army officers in the Cadet Mess Hall during lunch. The evening of September 11, the Academy had a vigil, which included the entire Corps of Cadets lined up in darkness as the bugle played taps for the fallen. Greenberg said you could hear cadets crying and that moment solidified Greenberg’s feeling that he wanted to serve our country and lead soldiers.

After that day, the plebes were not hazed by the upper classmen, but instead were treated as humans – future officers who will eventually go to war together. The upper classmen were more concerned about what lay ahead and focused on ensuring the freshman class was prepared for what was to come – war. They focused on tactics, leadership, and other combat related topics.

One highlight of Greenberg’s time on campus involved joining the choir. The group would leave campus to visit synagogues and Hillel houses. In 2005, they performed at the White House during Hanukkah.

Greenberg received his commission as a Military Intelligence Officer in 2005. He received his commission from Rabbi Major Carlos Huerta, one of his mentors at the academy. Huerta served 22 years and was instrumental in instilling a sense of Jewish identity and advocating Tikkun Olam. Huerta served as the Jewish chaplain at West Point for nine years and in 2003 volunteered to go to Iraq with the 101st Airborne Division. Huerta is an example of what it means to be a selfless servant and inspired Greenberg and the other Jewish cadets preparing to go to war.

From left: Greenberg, Michael Fichman, Roger Bahrman, and Timm Russ.

Greenberg deployed to Afghanistan in 2006 with the 10th Mountain Division out of Fort Drum, New York. He served as the Battalion Intelligence Collection Coordinator supporting a light infantry unit in the mountains of Afghanistan which engaged in daily firefights. A few days into his first deployment, Greenberg realized providing intelligence and strategic battlefield resources to the frontline of an armed conflict had a huge impact. “I learned early in life, and especially in Afghanistan, that life is full of obstacles and there are many ways to approach any situation. Obstacles are opportunities to learn, grow, and teach,” Greenberg said. In 2009, Greenberg deployed to Afghanistan a second time, serving as the Head of Intelligence for his battalion. He played an integral role in counter rocket attacks, combat patrols, and base security.

Greenberg eventually left Fort Drum and moved to Fort McPherson, Georgia. That’s where he met his wife, Felicia. They have two sons, Noah who is six and Asher who is four. In Georgia Greenberg served as an Intelligence Exercise Planner with the U.S. Army Central Command, supporting missions in Jordan, Kuwait, and Saudi Arabia. In 2012 Greenberg took command of the 715th Military Intelligence Battalion at Schofield Barracks in Hawaii. He served his final year of active duty with the 25th Infantry Division.

Greenberg says his sister Anna died from a rare form of cancer in 2013, but she taught him a lot about keeping a positive attitude. “My sister Anna taught me a lot about life during her cancer journey – about living life with a positive attitude. Anna also taught me to be kind to all, live for today, and don’t give up… I’ve seen a lot through war and my sister’s battle with cancer that has influenced me to live life with a smile and laugh,” he said.
In August, Greenberg worked behind the scenes trying to help Afghan translators and their families get out of the country safely. He provided the names of dozens of linguists and their family members to the staff of Congressman Bill Keating. As the threat level increased, Greenberg worked with the Congressman’s staff to get letters to those who helped U.S. forces. Some were able to leave the country successfully. Greenberg said he felt it is a Jewish responsibility to help the Afghan people – similar to how some chose to help Jews living under the Nazis in Germany.

On August 23, Greenberg spoke to one of his linguists and gave him specific guidance on how to get out of the country. Unfortunately, that same day a suicide bomb exploded at the gate to the airport. That family now needs to find another way to get out Afghanistan. Greenberg said the past few weeks has been an emotional rollercoaster.

Recently Greenberg participated in a discussion, “Saving Lives: A Jewish Voice in the Afghan Refugee Crisis,” with Rabbi Erez Sherman from Sinai Temple in Los Angeles. The conversation included Greenberg’s primary interpreter from 2009. Abdulhai Shirzad fled Afghanistan in 2015 with wife and child and now lives in Germany.

Shirzad is still trying to get himself and his family to the United States.

Greenberg currently works for Lockheed Martin and lives in Orlando, Florida, where he is trying to start a new JWV post.

Volume 75. Number 3. 2021