In 1916, Israel Kristal was a motherless Jewish child whose father was away fighting in World War I and would soon be killed in action.
He turned 13 without celebrating his bar mitzvah.
A century later, Kristal will finally get the chance.
Kristal, who is the oldest man in the world, according to Guinness World Records, turns 113 on Thursday. His daughter, Shulimath Kristal Kuperstoch, told the DTA news agency that his family is planning a bar mitzvah for him, and about 100 relatives will attend. “We will bless him, we will dance with him, we will be happy,” she said.
Born in what is now Poland, Kristal has survived 113 years of Jewish history. He was in his 30s when the Nazis invaded, and he was imprisoned with his wife and two children in the Lodz ghetto and then at Auschwitz. His wife and children died.