"If every German Jew and anti-Nazi had possessed a Mauser rifle, twenty rounds and the will to use it, Adolf Hitler would be a footnote to the history of the Weimar Republic." -- Aaron Zelman, 1995.
Forwarded by Mama Liberty comes this sad news from Claire Wolfe, referencing this obituary:
Zelman, Aaron S. December 21, 2010, age 64 years, of Erin, WI. Beloved husband of Nancy Zelman (nee Soderlund). Dear father of Erik and Jeremy Zelman. Further survived by other relatives and friends. Funeral services 11:00 AM Friday, December 24, 2010 at Beth El Ner Tamid Synagogue, 2909 W. Mequon Rd., Mequon. Memorials to JPFO, P.O. Box 270143, Hartford, WI 53027 or Beth El Ner Tamid Synagogue are appreciated.
Claire says, in part:
Aaron and I worked together for seven years. I admired him and even though he could be crazy-making at times, he had one of the most creative minds I’ve ever encountered and he was unfailingly a gentleman and a gentle-spoken man. He created a unique niche in the gun-rights movement and I hope JPFO can continue without him.
Aaron was born with Marfan Syndrome, which can cause a host of related problems, some potentially fatal. I don’t know what he died from, but between that and his Type-A, hard-driving nature, it’s not surprising, though it’s shocking and tragic, that he died so young. Rather, I tell myself it shouldn’t be surprising. Yet Aaron was such a powerful personality, it’s hard to think of him being extinguished.
I worked with Aaron on firearms rights issues long-distance for fifteen years, and I'm stricken because he was one of those fixtures that you come to count on, thinking they'll always be around.
David Codrea speaks for me as well:
I had the great privilege of working with Aaron over the past several years, including corresponding and speaking on the telephone, and was pleased to do what I could to help promote the great and innovative work of Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership.
We have lost a giant. The sadness I feel is gripping.
Goodbye, my friend. What an honor it was to know you. I am so grateful for the work you did on behalf of freedom, and for the legacy you leave behind.
May we be worthy of it.
You know, in has been a tradition for thousands of years that visitors to the grave of a Jewish man or woman would place stones on their grave markers, which originally were themselves just heaps of stones. It began, it is said, as a sign of kindness and respect to the deceased and his or her family. In a time before technology, one might hear of the death of a friend many weeks or even months after the funeral. Yet even after a tombstone was erected, one could participate in the "mitzvah" by adding your own stone to the grave. It is a token of respect and of commitment.
By placing your own stone on the mound, you showed not only that you respected the deceased, but you demonstrated that we the living are never finished building the monument to the life's work of the great soul who has passed on.
One day, I will place my own stone on Aaron Zelman's marker.
He was truly a great soul, and one hell of a fighter for American liberty. I shall miss him terribly.