SCRANTON — Members of the Jewish community in Scranton are preparing to say goodbye to a long-standing member who passed away at the age of 92.
Sam Rosen of Scranton was believed to be our area’s longest living holocaust survivor.
Friends of Rosen are remembering his spirit and his legacy.
In 2010 Sam Rosen told us a story from decades in the past but always fresh in his memory.
“Suddenly in 1940, when the Germans occupied Czechoslovakia, everything changed.”
Rosen’s life took him from escaping Nazi-occupied Czechoslovakia to Scranton where he was believed to be the longest-living holocaust survivor in northeast Pennsylvania.
Rosen died Friday at the age of 92.
“You lose 11 siblings, you lose your parents, not even talking about aunts and uncles and cousins and yet he never let it bring him down. He was a half-full kind of guy. And what he wanted to do is find meaning from that by telling other people that they needed to learn from it and they could never forget it,” said Lackawanna County Judge Carmen Minora.
At a meeting in Scranton, members of the Rotary Club remembered Rosen who was a member and was recently honored by the group. Friends say they’ll remember his stories because that’s what was most important to him.
Over the years, Rosen spoke with Newswatch 16 many times always saying his story needed to be shared.
“I hope the people, the generations, will think about it and not forget and that this should never happen again,” Rosen said in 2004.
Though Sam Rosen was notable in northeastern Pennsylvania for his personal story, the people who knew him best say he’ll be remembered for his positivity.
As a way to honor people who died in the holocaust, Sam Rosen put a lot of life into his 92 years. Friends say he was energetic and still each day came to the Jewish Community Center in Scranton to exercise.
“He was great, and he was always happy, and I never really saw him down. But a man who lived through what he lived through kept it inside, but shared his knowledge with the world,” said Mark Silverberg of the Jewish Federation of Northeastern Pennsylvania.
Friends say continuing to share his knowledge will be Rosen’s legacy.
Funeral services will be held at Temple Israel in Scranton on Wednesday at 11 a.m.