Book launch in Toronto for Double Threat on V-E Day May 8, 2018

Official Toronto launch of “Double Threat” at Beth Tikvah Toronto was on Tuesday night, which was the 73rd anniversary of V-E-Day, May 8. Honoured to meet Ric Levenston, the son of Lt. Col. Gerald Levenston, of Toronto, who handled the German surrender in May 1945. His commanding officer told Levenston “I want a Jew to tell those bastards what to do.” Special thanks go out to Crystal Hawk, the daughter of Senator (Lt. Col.) David Croll, who served with the Essex Scottish and Oxford Rifles. Hawk captivated the audience with her stories of how her father enlisted as a rank private while he was the mayor of Windsor. Special guest appearance also by RCAF #427 Squadron navigator Nathan Isaacs, a Winnipeg native, who survived a miraculous 30+ bombing raids into German-occupied Europe with his Halifax crew. Thanks to Norman Gardner, post commander of the Jewish War Veterans of Canada, and also to Rabbi Jarrod Grover and Cantor Tibor Kovari, Michael Ostfield, and Mona Brown and Gayle Kertzman, of Beth Tikvah, for having me with you to share the story of the 17,000 Canadian Jewish men and women who fought in WWII.

smiling people
Ellin with Ric Levenston, son of Lt. Col. Gerald Levenston.
journalist interview
Ellin interviews Crystal Hawk, daughter of Sen. (Lt. Col. David Croll), at the book launch for Double Threat: Canadian Jews, the Military and WWII”, May 8, 2018.
speaker at podium
Michael Ostfield, son of a WWII veteran, introduces Ellin at Beth Tikvah Synagogue.
Canadian Jewish war veterans
Jewish war veterans in the front row stand for the singing of national anthem.
audience at synagogue
Audience listens to Ellin’s lecture at Beth Tikvah Synagogue, May 8, 2018.
Jewish War veteran
Norm Gardner, Jewish War Veterans of Canada, brings greetings on V-E Day anniversary event.
Jewish war veteran.
RCAF #427 Squadron Navigator (WWII) Nathan Isaacs (second from left) looks at wartime photo of himself in Ellin Bessner’s book “Double Threat”.
book signing
Ellin signs books as Earl Gardner of the Jewish War Veterans of Canada looks on.

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