NAME: Hilkiahu Shoshana, née Gartenhaus

DATE OF BIRTH: May 4, 1926

DATE OF DEATH: February 21, 2017

Shoshana was born May 4,1926 in New York, to the Gartenhaus family. Her father, Shmuel Mordechai, and mother Malka née Weissbrod, emigrated from Galicia to the US  1920. They had a son and five daughters. The family visited Eretz-Yisrael 1929. Three years later when Shoshana was seven, they made aliya settling in Jerusalem. Shoshana studied at ‘Horev High School’, then at ‘Shpitzer’. Her father worked as an insurance agent and studied at the Old City ‘Beit- El’ Yeshiva. Shoshana joined ‘Brit-Hachashmonaim’ at twelve.

Aged fifteen she joined Lehi and engaged in distributing info-material and transporting weapons. At first she moved to Tel Aviv, then worked in the ‘Bnei-Akiva Yeshiva’ at Kfar Haro’eh, afterwards joining ‘Brit-Hachashmonaim’ in Beit-Yehoshua. Her father began to suspect  she belonged to Lehi and wanted to take her out of the country for a while, so in 1946 she visited the US.   Binyamin Gepner was there after  having escaped the British, following his involvement with the Lord Moyne assassination planning. It was arranged  he marry Shoshana,  a US citizen, to enable him to remain there.

She stayed two years, coming into contact with Lehi members, with whom she recruited youth to the movement. When Shoshana returned home she joined the group  which had to retreat from Kfar-Darom,  reorganize at Kerem-Yavneh, until resettling at their new home in Bnei-Darom. She lived there  ten years. In  1958 she married Dov Hilkiahu (Stern), who’d been disabled during the War of Independence; an artist, poet and writer, whose writings appeared in ‘Sulam’, Dr. Yisrael Eldad’s publication. They had five children: Aharon, Sarah, Shmuel, Chefziba, Ariel and eight grandchildren.

Dov passed away 1976. After four years she moved with her children to Hebron. Shoshana embroidered napkins based on drawings her husband had made. They gained international aclaim. She has been holding meetings, conventions, for many years, about retaining the Jewish character of the Jewish State. She recently assembled  a collection of ‘Brit-Hachashmonaim’ writings to book form, which she sells. Shoshana lives in the ‘Ramot’ neighborhood, Jerusalem.