Friday, April 20, 2007


In the course of Cho Seung-Hui's killing spree at Virginia Tech this week, Professor Liviu Librescu held the door of his classroom shut delaying the disturbed gunman's attempts to gain entry. The Professor was shot through the door but prevented the killer from entering the classroom until all of his students had escaped through the windows.

It was in this way that the 77 year old survivor of the Holocaust died on 16 April, 2007 - Holocaust Memorial Day.

The Israeli Professor, a husband, father, grandfather and teacher died protecting the lives of others and thereby his last deed in life was an act of healing the world - tikkun olam. That he did so on this of all days is one of the great ironies of life and death; his selflessness and heroism epitomises all that is good about the universal values of Jewish existence.

Liviu Librescu was buried this morning in Ra'anana, Israel. At the funeral, his son Arie said that "the courses in aerodynamics have ended. On the 16th of the month, you started a new career, teaching a new subject - heroism - [which] millions of students are learning."

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