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Students Spread Love and Light to Honor Poway Victims

In the wake of the tragic shooting in the Chabad of Poway synagogue that left one woman dead and three others injured, the students of JETS knew they needed to add more light to the world. As the Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, taught: “A little light dispels much darkness”. It’s a message that’s been repeated this past week by Rabbi Yisroel Goldstein, who lost a finger in the attack, as well as rabbis across the globe. So JETS has answered the call.

To honor the legacy of Lori Gilbert Kaye, who was killed during the shooting, our students resolved to increase in acts of goodness and kindness. Lori was a woman of deep faith who exemplified kindness and generosity. “My mother thrived and lived her entire life for the sake of friendship, to give flowers to people all over San Diego… to bask in the glory of connection, of story, of history,” her daughter Hannah recalled at the funeral.

This past Friday, Principal Naftali Smith and JETS students visited a retirement home, where they distributed roses and candles to the senior citizens. With songs, smiles and joyful conversation, they spread love and good cheer.

During shiva, the traditional seven-day period of mourning, one of our JETS students visited with Lori’s husband, Dr. Howard Kaye, and asked what JETS could do in her honor. Dr. Kaye responded that Lori loved roses, and requested that we plant a rose garden in her memory. Plans are now underway to create the Lori Kaye Memorial Garden.

JETS has strong ties to Chabad of Poway; a number of boys from San Diego and Poway, including two of Rabbi Goldstein’s sons, have attended the school. JETS has visited Chabad of Poway numerous times for school trips and Shabbatons.

“JETS stands behind Lori’s values of love and light,” says Rabbi Mayer Schmukler, founder of JETS. “Violence is not the answer to violence. Love is the answer. Through inspiring our youth to carry on Lori’s values, her legacy of friendship and and kindness will live on forever.”