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Candle lighting marks Holocaust remembrance

Chris Caya/WBFO News

A ceremony marking Yom Hashoah, or Holocaust Memorial Day, was held in Erie County's Rath Building on Friday. County Executive Mark Poloncarz, Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown and Jewish community leaders lit six candles, each one signifying one million Jews murdered by the Nazis from 1933-1945.

The commemoration was led by Holocaust Resource Center President Gene Setel.

"Remembrance obligates us to focus not only on memorializing those who were killed but also on reflecting what could have been done to save them and our responsibility to prevent further atrocities from ever taking place," Setel said. 

Setel says the targeted slaughter by the Nazis included Jews, Poles, the handicapped, Gypsies, homosexuals, Jehovah's Witnesses, and political dissidents.

He says the hatred that spread the Holocaust still exists, evident in inhumanities in Cambodia, Bosnia, Rwanda, Darfur, and Syria.

Poloncarz and Brown issued a joint proclamation on Friday honoring Holocaust Victims.