Who Was Benjamin Barney Garadetsky?

Shalom Lamm is a successful real estate executive from New York. Throughout his career, he oversaw the works of almost 10,000 apartments across all five boroughs of the city. Outside of his professional work, Shalom Lamm is one of the leaders of Operation Benjamin, an initiative that aims to replace Latin crosses on the graves of Jewish American soldiers who fell in World War II with Star of David.

Benjamin Barney Garadetsky, the soldier after whom the project was named, was a Private First Class of the 66th Regiment of the 2nd Armored Division that was deployed in Normandy. The project was first named the Normandy Heritage Project, and Garadetsky’s grave was the first to receive a gravestone with Star of David in 2018.

Garadetsky’s original name was Boruch Reigorodeczki. He was born in 1914 in Zhytomyr, a village in modern-day Ukraine, and his family moved to the United States while Regorodeczki was a child. He joined the army in 1941 and died in 1944 in Normandy, aged 30.

Garadetsky served in 2nd Armored Division, nicknamed “Hell on Wheels,” which was formed in 1940 and saw battle on two continents and in ten countries. He also died a member of the 2nd Armored division.

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