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Journey of a Pendant

Leah Gebber

When Tova Klein visited the Yvel Design Center and bought a pendant with the message Am Echad, she had no idea of the journey on which she was about to embark. Throughout the search for the three murdered teens, and Rachel Frankel’s call for unity, throughout the Gaza war, the pendant accompanied her. And when the war was over, Tova embarked on a mission to gift each bereaved mother with this beautiful reminder of the unity of our nation.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

“What can you say to a mother who buried an 18-year-old son?” Tova — who calls herself “just a plain Jew who lives in Jerusalem” — encountered this question not once, but more than 70 times. In May 2014, Tova and her friends visited Yvel Visitor’s Center. “It was so bashert,” she said. “We had been thinking of visiting the design center for months, but it only panned out in May.” Located in Motza, with a view of the hills surrounding Jerusalem, Yvel has an international reputation for producing iconic jewelry: synthesizing breathtaking baroque pearls with gold, diamonds, emeralds, and rubies. Yvel pieces are exquisite works of art (as reflected in the price tags, which can reach into the millions). As Tova toured the workshop and gallery, she was entranced not only by the breathtaking beauty ofIsaacLevy’s creations (the name Yvel is a mirror image of his name) — she was blown away by the Yvel concept. Five years ago, Levy established the Megemeria School of Jewelry to support the Ethiopian community. The Megemeria Collection contains a range of ethnic jewelry inspired by themes close to the olim’s heart. Tova purchased a beautiful brass pendant, tooled with the messageAmEchad in both Hebrew and Amharic. Just weeks later, Gil-Ad Shaer, Naftali Fraenkel, and Eyal Yifrach, Hy”d, were tragically murdered, and a few weeks after that, any veneer of summer calm was shattered: sirens rent the air, and thousands of soldiers entered Gaza. Tova remembers those difficult days. “I was very affected by the war and the kidnapping. I don’t have kids in the army, but wanted to do something in solidarity with those who did. I was also greatly inspired byRachelFraenkel’s call for unity.”

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