By Jodi Harman
Despite a heat index of over 100° Fahrenheit, several dozen people gathered under one of the massive oak trees dotting Arlington National Cemetery on Wednesday, September 6, 2023, to pay tribute to Major General Orde Wingate, British Army.
JWV’s 79th Anniversary Orde Wingate Memorial Ceremony was overseen by 2023-2024 JWV National Commander (NC) Barry Lischinsky, who welcomed special guests British Ambassador to the USA Dame Karen Pierce, DCMG, and Deputy Chief of Mission (DCM) for the Embassy of Israel Eliav Benjamin and was joined by Past National Commander Nelson Mellitz. All spoke of MG Wingate’s many contributions to both Britain and Israel, specifically his essential role in the formation of Israeli Defense Forces.
Kassie Sandacz and Bob Burgoslaw from Voices of Vets provided lovely renditions of all three countries’ national anthems: “God Save the King”, “Hatikvah”, and “The Star-Spangled Banner.” 2023-2024 National Vice Commander Gary Ginsburg led those gathered in the “Pledge of Allegiance” after Arlington National Cemetery’s Color Guard presented the Colors.
Ambassador Pierce, DCM Benjamin, and NC Lischinsky presented a wreath at the tomb where Wingate was interred along with five American service members and four British service members and civilians who perished on March 24, 1944, when their plane crashed in route to Burma. Taps sounded in the background, provided by Rob Eisenberg of Bugles Across America.
Given the nearness of the ceremony to Rosh Hashanah, Rabbi Chesky Tenenbaum ended the event with the blowing of the shofar.
Volume 77. Number 3. 2023