SPECIAL FOR THE AJT //

IDF soldier Sarice Holley, a native of Atlanta who made aliyah to serve Israel, is greeted by her grandparents. PHOTO / Edward Zeltser

IDF soldier Sarice Holley, a native of Atlanta who made aliyah to serve Israel, is greeted by her grandparents. PHOTO / Edward Zeltser

The Atlanta Chapter of the Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (FIDF) held its Annual Gala on May 7 at the Georgia Aquarium. More than 450 guests attended and showed their support for Israel’s soldiers, raising more than a quarter-million dollars that will go toward FIDF well-being and educational programs for the brave men and women of the IDF.

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Prominent participants at the event included FIDF National Director and CEO, Maj. Gen. (Res.) Yitzhak (Jerry) Gershon; FIDF Deputy National Director, Col. (Ret.) Pinhas “Pinky” Zoaretz; Israel’s Naval Attaché, Capt. Ronen Nimni; Gala Co-Chairs, Ilene and Adrian Grant, Elaine and Alan Tanenbaum and Abe Schear; Host Committee Chair, Felicia Voloschin; and Keynote Speaker, Head of the IDF Command and Staff College, Maj. Gen. Yoseph Baidatz.

“We are overwhelmed by the generosity from our 2013 Gala event sponsors and attendees,” said FIDF Atlanta Executive Director Caryn Liss. “We want to truly thank everyone for supporting the brave soldiers of the IDF, whose job is to look after Israel. It is our job to look after them, and I am so proud of our Atlanta community for stepping up to do so.”

Former combat soldier Sarice Holley, who was granted one of FIDF’s IMPACT! academic scholarships, addressed FIDF supporters at the event, saying: “It filled my heart with pride that my home, Atlanta, is now adopting my other home, my combat intelligence unit.”

At the event, FIDF honored Norman Radow for his commitment to Israel and for becoming actively involved with FIDF when his son, Neil Radow, joined the Forces in 2012 as a combat soldier in the Artillery Corps.

“By all of us being here tonight,” Radow told attendees, “we are making a difference to Sarice Holley and to all the soldiers who stand between what we believe in and live for and those who seek to destroy it. In a real way, our support for the FIDF helps ensure our very survival as a civilized society.”

FIDF Atlanta Chairman of the Board Garry Sobel said:

“It was truly an honor to host such a tremendous event, as the Atlanta community demonstrated its unwavering support for the brave young men and women of the IDF and for their families. I believe that our guests left with a clear understanding of the mission, programs and importance of the role of the FIDF for Israel’s future.”

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