It’s always nice to get exactly what you want for your birthday and this year, Shoshana Ovitz had her birthday wish come true. She’s a Holocaust survivor who just turned 104 and she had one request for her milestone: to have all her descendants come together to celebrate at the Western Wall in Jerusalem.
Ovitz survived the Auschwitz concentration camp 74 years ago, according to Israeli media and lost her mother there. She wanted to have all her relatives together at the holy Jewish site and her family worked hard to make it happen, which wasn’t easy. In the end, they say nearly 90% of them made it and Ovitz had about 400 descendants, her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, surrounding her for her birthday.
Panini Friedman, Ovitz’s oldest granddaughter, says the celebration symbolized a triumph over the Nazis. “It was very emotional,” she says, adding, “everyone was there with tears in their eyes.”