FIDF Pennsylvania and SNJ Chapter Hold Annual Gala

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One thousand people gathered Monday night to recognize and support the men and women of the Israel Defense Forces as the Friends of the IDF Pennsylvania and Southern New Jersey Chapter held its fifth annual gala at the Crystal Tea Room.

Close to 1,000 people gathered Monday night to recognize and support the men and women of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) as the Friends of the IDF Pennsylvania and Southern New Jersey Chapter held its fifth annual gala at the Crystal Tea Room.

The evening featured keynote speaker Maj. Gen. (Res.) Amos Yadlin, a 40-year IDF veteran and Israel’s former Chief of Defense Intelligence. Wounded IDF veteran and Paralympic medalist Noam Gershony also spoke. Six years before winning the gold medal for wheelchair tennis at the 2012 London Paralympics, Gershony’s Israeli Air Force Apache helicopter crashed in Lebanon, killing his co-pilot and severely wounding the future champion.


Other guests included active-duty IDF Lone Soldiers from the Philadelphia area, Sgt. Aliza Green, 1st Lt. Shlomo, former Sgt. Lead, 1st Lt. Eric and Cpl. Matthew and FIDF Pennsylvania and Southern New Jersey Executive Director Tzvia Wexler. The IDF requested to not have the names of the soldiers released.

Green, 24, a tank instructor, who is from the Northeast, made aliayh 10 months ago. It was her first time back in Philly since moving to the Jewish homeland and it was an emotional night, as she saw her parents Andrea and Charley, friends from Temple University and congregants from Beth Sholom Congregation in Elkins Park.

“It’s fantastic being in the Army because you’re in a group of people who a are completely diverse,” Green said. “It doesn’t matter what kind of background you come from. Once you put on a uniform, you’re all on the same team. We see each other at our worst and our best.”

Contact: jcohen@jewishexponent.com: 215-832-0747

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