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Sandy-Hit Shul Menorah Heading to White House

Temple Israel of Long Beach, the Long Island synagogue damaged in Hurricane Sandy, will send a 90-year-old menorah that survived the storm to the White House for a Hanukkah party hosted by President Barack Obama on December 13, according to the New York Times.

The shul lost six torahs, incurred ten feet of flooding and an estimated $5 million of damages in the superstorm.

Earlier this month, the Forward reported that Temple Israel was unsure of what help the Federal Emergency Management Agency or his insurance company could provide in helping rebuild the synagogue. Temple Israel was also one of 14 synagogues in the New York area that incurred $100,000 or more in estimated damages.

Rabbi David Bauman, who is also a reserve chaplain in the Marins Corps, will accompany the menorah to Washington. In 2010, the White House chose a menorah found in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina for their annual party.

Bauman told the Times the gift illustrates the synagogues determination to bounce back from the crippling blow inflicted by Sandy.

“The story of Hanukkah is about the underdog becoming victorious,” he told the paper. “And that’s our goal. We will rebuild.”

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