Beta-Gershom Heroes

Through history, Descendants of Jewish Intermarriage have often been thrust into circumstances that brought forth unsurpassed heroism, many times at the expense of their life. Some of the people excelled for their commitment to God and the Torah, in the face of adversity; others faced persecution at the hands of anti-semitism; others performed tremendous deeds of loving kindness risking their own lives. Some of the heroes were matrilineal descendants of Jews. Some were patrilineal descendants of Jews. Some chose to defend the Torah even when, as patrilineal Jews, not recognized as Jews by their fellow Jews (the Rabbinical interpretation is that only matrilineal descendants are born Jewish).

We are proud to begin this section of this website, which honors descendants of Jewish intermarriage. As time progresses we continue to add their stories to this section. Some of the stories are redacted by the staff of, and in other cases we have provided links to already existing websites about those individuals. We hope that these individuals' lifes will serve as a inspiration for our readers:

Eli Nazareno. Stood up to the Inquisition and died at the stake for his upholding of the Torah.

Petr Ginz. Recently discovered diaries tell the heart-wrenching story of this wonderful 14 year-old boy sent to Theresienstadt and murdered at Auschwitz at 16. His crime: being half-jewish (thru his father). Petr Ginz is hailed as the Czech 'Anne Frank'. We provide the link to Google here, as there are many articles being published now. His recently discovered diaries are published as "The Diary of Petr Ginz"; book edited by his sister Eva Ginz (now Chava Pressburger), published by Atlantic Monthly Press, New York.

Divided Lives. DIVIDED LIVES, by author Cynthia Crane, uncovers the hidden life stories of ten women, children of Jewish-Christian marriages, whose families were persecuted during Hitler's Third Reich. These women, the Mischlinge ("half-breeds"), suffered the onslaught of anti-Jewish laws that divided spouses, families, and friends. From the early Nazi years through post-war Germany, this compelling, personal chronicle reveals the secret horrors these women endured as they struggled to survive in a nation that had betrayed them.

Gregori Pesahovic. In August 1997, 15 year old Grigory (Grisha) Pesahovic was murdered during one of the terrorist bombings in Jerusalem. But adding insult to injury, Grigory was refused burial next to his fellow Jews. His infraction? Being only Jewish thru his father's line. Rabbinical Orthodoxy, which is responsible for Israel's laws on burials, marriages, etc., does not consider patrilineal descendants of Jews, as Jewish. Grigory and his family were not Christian and his parents refused a Greek Orthodox burial. At the end of the day, this boy, who made Aliyah from Russia to live like a Jew, with other Jews, would not be considered good enough to be offered a resting place in a Jewish cemetery. His heroism consisted first in making Aliyah and secondly in ending up giving up his life for living among his Jewish people. The heroism of his parents, for enduring their only child's death, and suffering the iniquities of having to beg for his descent burial. In the end, only the Bahai faith, who is tolerant of many faiths, provided the burial ground for Grigory.