By Amy Samin
This morning (Sunday), Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv continued the tradition of the team’s annual Chanukah visit to the children at Schneider Hospital in Petah Tikvah.
The full complement of players took part in the visit, along with their head coach Pini Gershon, the assistant coach Sharon Drucker, and team manager Gur Shelef.
The players signed autographs, handed out hundreds of packages of holiday candy in the shape of dreidels (a gift from the Carmit Company), and, thanks to the team’s main sponsor, Electra, took photographs with all the children who asked, bringing smiles to their sweet faces and also to those of their parents.
The players also distributed hundreds of DVDs of Maccabi’s unforgettable victory in the Euroleague championships in 2004, which naturally includes the Zalgiris miracle by Shelef-Sharp.
During Chanukah, what could be more fitting than remembering miracles?
The new foreign players on the team were especially touched by their first visit to Schneider Hospital.
D’or Fischer said, “I know we’ve done a good deed by coming here.
We brought cheer to these children, and put smiles on their faces, and that’s something that makes me smile, too.
It helps you understand how lucky you are; what a blessing it is to be healthy and to have the opportunity to bring them a little happiness.
It gives me a good feeling.”
Lior Eliyahu observed, “It’s a little tough to talk about basketball while we’re here; this is the real fight in life.
In the end, these things put life into perspective.”
Elton Brown: “I’d never heard of Chanukah, and I didn’t know that today was a holiday.
Is it the Israeli Christmas?” wondered the American center.
“I heard something, but I don’t really understand yet.
What is the significance of Maccabi?
I don’t know.
Is it related to this holiday?
Every day you learn something new.”