My father, Rabbi Chaplain Abraham Avrech passed away on March 15, 2014, which in the Jewish calendar translates into the 13th of Adar. Thus, this is the first Yahrzeit, memorial, without my father’s physical presence in this world. My father was 94 years old.
He is gone, but he is certainly not forgotten.
During Prime Minister’s Netanyahu’s historic address to Congress yesterday, I pondered the astonishing trajectory of my father’s life. Born in a tiny impoverished Polish town, my father and his family emigrated to the Goldeneh Medinah, the Golden Country, where they found the liberty to live as Jews and Americans.
My father reveled in Americanism, even as he lived the life of a Torah Jew, and a religious Zionist.
Like most New York Jews, my father was a lever-pulling Democrat for most of his life. But in his later years, he realized that the Democrat party had changed into something all too recognizable: a crypto-socialist organism.
My father was appalled by Obama and could not quite believe that America elected such a man to its highest office.
As we head into Purim, the holiday in which Jews remember an ancient Persian regime that sought to annihilate the Jewish people, I will read Megillat Esther and proudly remember my father: a pious Jew and a proud American.