History soon will be the only memory of the Holocaust, without live witnesses, as survivors die at the rate of nearly one an hour, according to a report by the Foundation for the Benefit of Holocaust Victims in Israel. The report was published two days before Holocaust Remembrance Day, which begins Wednesday night.
Approximately 12,000 survivors of the Nazi death machine died last year, leaving only around 185,000 survivors living in Israel, compared with more than 233,000 in 2009.
The youngest possible age of the survivors is 67, but very few were born and survived Nazi persecutions and death chambers, and most of the survivors are between their 70s and 90s.
Nearly 90 percent of those supported by the Foundation are over the age of 75.
Their needs have grown with their age. The number of survivors who applied for assistance also has risen, and nearly 20,000 survivors are dependent on nursing homes. The greatest need of survivors is medication and dental care.
The Foundation also noted there are approximately 10,000 survivors who suffer from loneliness, 5 percent of all Holocaust survivors living in Israel.