CREVE COEUR, Mo. – Exactly 30 days after Hamas’ brutal attack on Israel, a powerful ceremony took place in Creve Coeur Tuesday night. Hundreds of people showed up with a message. Name after name were read off; each one representing a hostage taken by Hamas terrorists 30 days ago.
The ceremony at B’nai Amoona congregation in Creve Coeur known as a Sheloshim, a Jewish tradition 30 days after a loss, is a way of keeping their memory alive.
While hundreds of people showed up Tuesday, it was the more than 200 empty chairs that served as the ceremony’s backdrop. Each honored one of those still-missing hostages with their age, photo and information about their abduction.
Rabbi Jeffrey Abraham said the ceremony was meant to serve as a reminder of how we got to this point.
“We want people to remember why this war began,” Abraham said. “Israel did not want to get into this war.”
Abraham said they want more attention to be paid to the missing hostages.
“There were innocent people that were murdered and innocent people that were taken hostage by Hamas terrorists. And we need to do everything we can to bring those hostages home,” he said.
It’s a message many in the St. Louis area, like Diane Rosen, resonate with.
“I think it’s important to remember why this all started, and to remember this was started because of the kidnapped Israeli’s, and the death of many Israelis,” Rosen said.
A somber ceremony remembering a dark day, highlighted by a call for action.
“We first need to have empathy for those who were kidnapped and to believe that they can be returned home,” attendee Gail Armstrong said.
People at Tuesday’s ceremony also called on U.S. officials to do everything in their power to help bring those hostages home.