Roza Bieliauskienė has died. She was born in 1956 in Vilnius to Holocaust survivors from a shtetl just outside the city. She grew up speaking Yiddish at home and hearing it on the street. Trained as an engineer, she eventually immersed herself in research, writing and teaching about the Holocaust, Yiddish and Jewish topics. She worked at the Vilna Gaon State Jewish Community from its inception for 20 years and taught at the Sholem Aleichem ORT Gymnasium in Vilnius. She worked on the translation of the Grigori Shur Holocaust diary, numerous other books published by the Vilna Gaon Museum, translated a number of children’s books, translated genealogies in Yiddish and was working on a book about the Jewish history of Lithuania at the time of her death. Our deepest condolences to her many friends, colleagues and family members.
Lithuanian prime minister Ingrida Šimonytė expressed her condolences on the death of the writer, dramaturg and translator Grigoriy Kanovich.
“Grigoriy Kanovich’s work gave a voice to entire generations of Litvaks who died and raised the curtain for the painful 20th century for a view into the profound, rich culture fostered for centuries in Lithuania, and at the same time, by presenting the agonies society experienced from the Holocaust, he formed the modern reader’s understanding and sympathy. Grigoriy Kanovich will remain in our memories as a person who carried the light through his works and through his always penetrating, respectful and hope-filled way of seeing. We have lost one of the great writers who was just as concerned with the present as with the past, with being able to live in harmony, in the emergent commonality, in what is shared rather than the categorical. I extend my sincere condolences to Grigoriy Kanovich’s loved ones during this difficult time of loss,” the Lithuanian prime minister wrote in her letter of condolence.
Full statement in Lithuanian here.
Silvija Sondeckienė passed away Saturday morning at the age of 80. She was a cellist, a professor and a friend of the Lithuanian Jewish Community. Her father-in-law was the Righteous Gentile Jackus Sondeckis and her late husband the renowned conductor Saulius Sondeckis was also a great friend of the Lithuanian Jewish Community. We extend our deepest condolences to her sons and their families.
The writer Grigoriy Kanovich has passed away at the age of 93. Our deepest condolences to his sons Sergejus and Dmitrijus, wife Olga and his many friends and fans around the world. He served as chairman of the Lithuanian Jewish Community from 1989 to 1993, when he moved to Israel.
World Jewish Congress president Ronald S. Lauder mourned the passing of Pope Benedict XVI on Saturday night.
“It is with great sadness that I learned today that Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI has passed away,” he said. “He was a towering figure of the Roman Catholic Church, both as pope and before that as the cardinal who gave the Catholic-Jewish relationship solid theological underpinning and enhanced understanding. No pope before him visited as many synagogues, and he made a point of meeting with local Jewish community representatives whenever he visited foreign nations.”
Lauder recalled having met the former pope at the Vatican three times and said that each time, he was “deeply moved by his affection and friendship for the Jewish people, his commitment to remembrance of the Shoah, and his unambiguous condemnation of Holocaust denial in any form.”
The Lithuanian Jewish Community is sad to report the death of Eliyahu Stoupel. He was a cardiologist who did important work on the effects cosmic rays, solar activity and geomagnetism have on human health and mortality rates. Born in Kaunas in 1929, he later moved to Israel and recently worked for the Beilinson Hospital and Medical Research Center in Petah Tikva just east of Tel Aviv. He always maintained ties with the land of his birth, came to teach university students and carried out joint studies and projects with other Lithuanian cardiologists. We extend our deepest condolences to his many friends, family members and colleagues around the world.
With deep sadness we report the death of Michail Grafman. He died December 18 at the age of 77. For many years he served as a member of the executive board of the Panevėžys Jewish Community. He was a good man, always took care of his family and was always reserved and responsible in his work for the community. We extend our deepest condolences to his children Jurijus, Julija and Simonas, and to his grandchildren and great-grandchildren as well as his many other friends and family members. His final burial will be at 2:00 P.M. on December 22 at the cemetery on Ramygalos street in Panevėžys.
The Lithuanian Jewish Community and LJC chairwoman extend our deepest condolences on the death of Adolfas Šleževičius to his many friends and relatives. The Lithuanian prime minister from 1993 to 1996 was born February 2, 1948 and his parents rescued Jews from the Holocaust. His Government stabilized the Lithuanian economy not least of all through the re-introduction of the Lithuanian currency the litas, and through improved relations with neighboring countries in the aftermath of the break-up of the Soviet Union. He is the author of over 50 articles and two books. Both his parents were recognized as Righteous Gentiles in 1994 by the Yad Vashem Holocaust Commemoration and Education Institute in Jerusalem.
Righteous Gentile Janina Vansovičiūtė-Grigaliūnienė has died. We extend our deepest condolences to her friends and family members.
Janina Vansovičiūtė-Grigaliūnienė, then Janina Vansovičiūtė, lived in an apartment in Kuršėnai which her parents had rented with Sofia Vashkevitch, who was using forged documents showing she was Janina’s sister. After the war both girls returned to the Vansovičius home in Raseiniai. Janina and her parents Jonas and Natalija were recognized as Righteous among the Nations by the Yad Vashem Holocaust authority in 2011.
Uogė Ieva Dargienė, a member of the Union of Former Ghetto and Concentration Camp Prisoners, has passed away. She was born in 1931. We extend our deepest condolences to her sister Jadvyga and niece Rima.
We extend our deepest condolences to Lithuanian president Gitanas Nausėda on the death of his father, Antanas, and to all his many friends and family members.
Our deepest condolences to Natalija Cheifec and to her family on the death of her beloved father.
Natalija Dvorakovskaja passed away October 2. She was born in 1949. She was a long-standing member of the Klaipėda Jewish Community. We send our condolences to her husband Alekandras and the family members she leaves behind.
The Lithuanian Jewish Community extends our deepest condolences to Violeta Gaižauskaitė and Monika Antanaitytė on the loss of their son and brother.
With deep sadness we report the death of Jefim Levin on September 7. He was born in 1931. Our condolences to his wife Nina and daughter Jelena.
The Lithuanian Jewish Community mourns the death of the famous Lithuanian filmmaker and cultural scientist Pranas Morkus (1938-2022) and we extend our most sincere and deepest condolences to his family members and friends.
Morkus was born February 18, 1938, in Klaipėda to the family of theater actress Galina Yatskevich. From 1955 to 1957 he was a student at the Lomonosov Philology Department of Moscow State University, and from 1957 to 1960 at the History and Philology Faculties of Vilnius University.
From 1962 to 1964 he was attended the highest-level courses for scriptwriters and directors in Moscow. He was a member of the Lithuanian Union of Cinematographers. From 1960 to 1962 he was editor-in-chief of radio theater for the Television Radio Committee of the Lithuanian Soviet Socialist Republic, and from 1968 to 1970 he served as editor-in-chief for the creative body Lietuvos Telefilmas.
We extend our deepest condolences on the death of Polina Zingerienė at the age of 101 to her sons Markas and Emanuelis and her many friends and relatives.
She was born in Kaunas where she was graduated from high school. Her adolescence was cut short by World War II. She was imprisoned in the Kaunas ghetto and later sent to a concentration camp. After the Allies liberated the camp, Polina returned to Kaunas.
Her painful experiences and struggle to survive the Holocaust led her to go into medicine. She received in diploma in natal and developmental nursing. She worked in her field of medicine till the age of 76.