Izaly Zemtsovsky, JFCS East Bay Client and Holocaust Survivor, Shares His Story
“JFCS East Bay is more than simply helpful. Let me express myself a bit poetically: it is the beam of light in the dark realm.”
My name is Izaly Zemtsovsky. I’m a retired professor of music and folklore. I was born in St. Petersburg, Russia, and I have been a resident of Walnut Creek since 2012.
World War II began when I was five years old. It is a wonder that I escaped when our rail train was destroyed (in Leningrad) by the German fascist bombing. We were eventually evacuated to the remote Ural region, not as people, but as cattle to be transported. Not everyone survived that long and horrible, truly agonizing railroad journey. Some people died on the way to the Russian East…
I’d like to emphasize two main goals of the Adult Services Dept of the Jewish Family and Community Services East Bay, which is headed by the friendly Rita Clancy, as I see and feel them: First, to build a community; second, to assist its members individually.
Both these aims have been crucial for all of us, especially during the recent pandemic years and the current tragedy in Ukraine. I would say, the activity of the JFCS East Bay is more than simply helpful. Let me express myself a bit poetically: it is the beam of light in the dark realm.
I’m personally grateful for the variety of impressive ZOOM programs, supported by JFCS East Bay, which offer both cultural and health benefits, and for the set of personal assistance which helps us to live decently – that is, to survive psychologically and economically. I mean such substantial financial assistance of JFCS East Bay as providing hearing aid, dental and ophthalmology procedures, as well as a variety of home care.
Frankly, I don’t know how my family would continue to endure our everyday life without that kind of regular support provided by the Adult Services Dept of JFCS East Bay. Our gratitude to its staff is immeasurable.