By Ben Tinsley
DALLAS — The yellow Magen David Adom mobile intensive care unit ambulance that area residents Allyn and Susan Kramer purchased for Israel is quite strong — designed for the severest of trauma situations.
This yellow unit contains advanced equipment and is known commonly as an “emergency room on wheels.” It will soon be on its way to Northern Israel.
The Kramers were present at Temple Emanu-El this month as the ambulance they sponsored was brought to the door for the children there to “inspect.”
The inner workings and functions of this ambulance were explained Sunday to the school’s kindergarten, first and second graders by Cari Immerman, Midwest regional director of American Friends of Magen David Adom; and Ori Shaham, head of the Israel logistics department of Magen David Adom.
The students — especially the younger ones — were very impressed. Their eyes filled with wonder as they learned more.
Rabbi Amy Ross, director of Youth Learning + Engagement, said Sunday that Temple Emanu-El’s entire school would cycle through the synagogue at some point that day for the same lessons and “inspection” opportunity.
“Each class is getting a picture with the ambulance — first kindergarten then first and second grade,” the rabbi said.
Temple Emanu-El was the first of several stops the ambulance made Sunday and Monday, including the Points for Peace basketball tournament at the Aaron Family JCC, Congregation Beth Torah and area day schools among others.
Back at Temple Emanu-El, Immerman discussed the many functions of the ambulance with the young students.
“Can you guess how many babies get born in an ambulance in Israel?” Immerman asked them.
One of the children could be heard whispering an answer to another student.
A couple of tries at an answer were then made — but the number was too low.
Immerman went ahead and answered the question.
“Every year we deliver or help bring into life about 15,000 babies,” she said to the astonishment of the children. “We help lives by helping babies.”
Shaham had his own statistic about helping babies be born.
“I took care of about 100 in my career,” he told the children, who were equally astonished by his answer.
The Kramers, meanwhile, said they aren’t looking for attention. They told the TJP they just want to help save Jewish lives.
“I just woke up one morning and thought this would be a great thing to do,” Allyn Kramer said. “The mission is to save lives in Israel, so we are grateful to be able to do that. … We all feel Jews should take care of one another.”
His wife agreed.
“Our philosophy, our goal in life is to save Jews,” Susan Kramer said “This is the ultimate way to save Jewish lives. … This is a way to show how grateful we are to the people of Israel. We are honored to be a part of this.”
Since June 2006, Magen David Adom has been officially recognized by the International Committee of the Red Cross as the national aid society of the state of Israel under the Geneva Conventions, and a member of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.
MDA is not government funded and is in great need of new ambulances, major equipment and a new underground blood center. MDA operates Israel’s only blood bank and its above ground facility in Ramat Gan is vulnerable to rocket attacks.
According to literature, Magen David Adom must add 100 new ambulances to their fleet to replace those returned from service to meet the needs to Israel’s growing population and to expand coverage on the Israel border and to be fully prepared to evacuate injured military personnel.