Suburban Residents Celebrate Jewish Homeland at Walk with Israel
Daday, Eileen O., Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)
Byline: Eileen O. Daday Daily Herald Correspondent
Thousands of miles away from Israel, hundreds of suburban residents marched through morning rain Sunday to support the Jewish homeland.
Jewish residents from 14 suburban congregations as far as McHenry and Vernon Hills marched in Buffalo Grove as a show of unity and support during the 25th annual Walk With Israel.
Nearly 1,000 walkers, many of them young families with children, gathered at the Jewish Community Center in Buffalo Grove.
As Cantor Alan Smolen of Elgin blew the traditional shofar, or the long ram's horn, the group set out on a 2 1/2-mile walk through Buffalo Grove neighborhoods.
The Northwest suburban walk, coordinated by Bobbi Ross of Wheeling, was one of seven Walk With Israel events in the Chicago area. The walk celebrated not only its 25th anniversary, but also Israel's 48th birthday and Jerusalem's 3,000th anniversary.
The walk raised money for the resettlement of Russian Jewish families to Israel.
"It's important for our family to support the families who are resettling in Israel," said Anita Hornung of St. Charles, a member of Congregation Knesset Israel in Elgin, who pushed her two young children in a stroller.
"We also want to show the unity of all the congregations," added Brad Burker of St. Charles.
With a backdrop of tenuous peace talks in the Middle East, marchers said they particularly wanted to show their support for Israel this year. …