Israel is currently leading the world in the race to vaccinate all of its citizens against the Coronavirus. The first stage of the operation involved vaccinating all of the country’s health workers, elderly, and any other residents who are in a high-risk category.
Due to the large number of people rushing to receive the vaccine, health providers asked United Hatzalah for assistance in administering the vaccines across the country. More than 300 of the organization’s volunteers answered the call and are taking part in the national operation of administering the vaccine to as many people as possible. These volunteers can be found at various vaccine centers administering between 8–10 vaccines per hour on average.
On December 31st, United Hatzalah volunteer EMT Linor Attias was given the honor of vaccinating a very special person, Yosef Kleinman. Kleinman is a 92-year-old Holocaust survivor and was one of the prosecution’s witnesses in the Eichmann trial. When Kleinman arrived at the vaccinating booth, he had a lot to tell Linor. The EMT listened as Kleinman told her his remarkable story which included a description of how he is one of the last survivors of the lethal Mengele experiments, which were conducted on more than three thousand teenagers. Kleinman survived Auschwitz and recalled being vaccinated for many diseases in the past, such as Typhus and Polio. On the last day of 2020, he got vaccinated against COVID-19.
“It was such an inspiring moment, and a night I will never forget,” said Linor. “Yosef had survived so much in his lifetime, and now he is getting vaccinated to survive this horrible virus that has already taken so many lives. Yosef told me how when the virus began, he and his wife locked themselves in their home and never left. He was excited and hopeful to be able to spend this Passover holiday with his family. I usually don’t celebrate New Year’s, but this New Year’s was truly memorable. Yosef is a survivor, by all means. He defied the odds and beat death numerous times, I was so lucky and honored to be able to participate in his fight to survive, to beat COVID-19 and death yet another time.”
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