Editor: Sam Rosen, the Scranton area’s last known Holocaust survivor, was a man for all seasons and a man for all humankind.
While he was deeply involved in his own Jewish religious life, he was an “everyman” — an example of how we can be particular and universal.
Sam’s capacity to remember the wholesale destruction of his family and rise above it to give hope and courage to several generations of people in our region is surely in the spirit of Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther King Jr. Some are permanently maimed by memories like Sam’s. He teaches us that it is possible to use an example of savagery to remind others that there is another way to live.
Sam loved his adopted country — not only because he was able to thrive here on a personal level, but as important to him, because he could share his story with others, particularly young people, to empower them to use their cherished freedom to make the world a more just place.
Sam didn’t win the Nobel Prize and his work was not known on the global screen. But in turning his memories, his nightmares, into dreams of justice, he gave thousands of people in our area the power to act on behalf of all people.
Let us keep Sam in our memories and learn from him the ability to overcome loss and grief by using it to become an agent for change.
Times-Tribune, Publication Date: March 5, 2014