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Hockey player Evan Kaufmann

As we commemorate Yom HaShoah, Israel's Holocaust Remembrance Day,
on April 27-28, 2014, there is also a sports connection to this day.
  Hockey player Evan Kaufmann's paternal grandfather was a survivor. After the war was over, he was finally free to leave Germany, and moved to the USA and started a family. Evan was an athletic and smart youngster who eventually was given a college ice hockey scholarship. He is average size (5'9" and 167 pounds, or 1.75 Meters and 76 Kg), and though he posted excellent stats, he was not drafted by an NHL team (their loss). His agent suggested that he would be more suited to playing professional hockey in Europe, and he ultimately signed with a team in Germany. It was a difficult choice for Evan, as that is the country that was responsible for murdering most of his grandfather's family. Later in his life,his grandfather had wanted to go back to "tie up the loose ends" of his former life, and this inspired Evan to consider the contract offer. He played so well that he was approached about becoming a citizen and playing for their National team. After much deliberating, he finally agreed. When I first read about Evan Kaufmann, it was a very moving story, so I just had to write a rap song about him. I contacted his family, and sent him a signed copy of my lyrics, and of course a couple of pictures I had downloaded for him to sign for me. Evan signed them and sent me a handwritten note expressing his gratitude for my support. Unlike many Jewish sports stars in our day and age, and indeed many Jews outside of Israel, both of his parents are Jewish, and Evan's wife is Jewish and they have a toddler whom they are raising to be a proud Jew. While living in Germany during the hockey season, the Kaufmann's are connected to the local Jewish community and celebrate our traditions. May they be an inspiration to us all. Below is the rap I wrote about Evan.

Evan Kaufmann Rap by David Nachenberg (copyright Dec. 2012)


Evan Kaufmann's fulfillin' every hockey player's dream,
And that's to be a star on their team.
His grandfather survived the Shoah and moved to the United States.
As a youth hockey player, Evan was first rate.
He continued playing hockey while he was in college,
And accumulated vast amounts of knowledge.
At reading the defense, he is astute.
He can skate, check, pass and shoot.
Kaufmann's very tough and plays with soul.
He proves it each time he scores a goal.
With his skill, desire and luck,
He skates up the ice, controlling the puck.
And you hear the audience's roar
As it sails in the net and he scores!
And just like me, and just like you,
Evan Kaufmann is proud to be a Jew.
But now y'all listen to me--
He also plays for Team Germany.
This is proof that finally, at last,
Germany's tryin' to make up for its past.
Kaufmann proves to the World each time he scores
That we're still here and stronger than before.



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