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Love can find you in the most unexpected (or expected) places, be it a High School Spanish or Hebrew literature class, the Kindergarten playground, or even a writing competition. Below, we profile six couples who thank YOF for bringing them together.

You would be amazed to know that there are 497 YOF couples that span seven decades. We continue to beat the Shidduch crisis! 

rosen  Rena (Brickman) Rosen (ES ‘65, HS ‘69) and Mordy Rosen (ES ‘65, HS ‘69) could tell Flatbush stories for days. They met on the YOF playground in Kindergarten! Mordy first saw Rena when she was at the top of the slide throwing a big red ball down to other children while  giving them directions. They first got to know each other in third grade when they were in the same class, and they have been inseparable ever since. When Rena ran for Student Council, Mordy was her campaign manager. They were co-valedictorians of their high school class.

In 2019, Mordy and Rena traveled from their home in California to celebrate their 50th reunion with YOF. “It was incredible,” Rena said, “there is nothing like Flatbush. So many years had passed and we slid right back in with our friends and classmates.” Mordy said seeing Dr. Wolowelsky, his former history teacher, was a delight. “He had a tremendous influence on me and I thanked him at our reunion.” Some of their fondest memories are of the unparalleled experiences they engaged in at YOF, including the marches for Soviet Jewry and the plays they saw at Lincoln Center. YOF helped expose them to a world of possibilities.

Hidary  Abie J. Hidary (ES ‘91, HS ‘95) and Yvette (Esses) Hidary (HS ‘95) could be called the quintessential Flatbush couple. They met in math class freshman year and their friendship continued to blossom. Abie was a three-sport athlete (softball, tennis, and hockey) and you could always find Yvette in the stands cheering him on. Yvette said, “when you meet so young, it's a very special thing. Being the same age, going to school together -  we have so many shared experiences and grow together.”

 For Abie and Yvette, their commitment to Flatbush did not end at graduation. They are also YOF parents. Their five children, Esther, Grace, Katie, Jack and daughter Betty (not pictured) are Flatbush kids too. “I love when my son comes home, sharing songs and talking about Rabbi Tsaidi’s Oneg Shabbat program. In the high school, Tsei U’Lemad Ⓡ  is something I would’ve loved.” For Yvette, it’s all about the high school’s new building, the incredible library, and the inspiring BenHaim Beit Midrash. “The Pathfinders Program is unique, giving kids the opportunity to explore different career paths,” she added.

In addition to being alumni and parents, they are also tireless volunteers. Yvette runs the YOF Daytime Community Learning Program bringing Torah to parents, alumni, and community members. Abie currently serves as President of the YOF Board of Trustees. When asked why they volunteer, Abie said, “being involved gives us the opportunity to reinforce the values YOF is teaching at home with our own children.”
lazaros  Tamar (Grazi) Lazaros (ES ‘09, HS ‘13) and Jacob Lazaros (HS ‘13) shared many fun and funny stories from their days at Flatbush. They met when they were seated next to each other in Hebrew Literature with Mrs. Halper. Jacob said, “not too long after being seated together, the teacher changed our seats because we spent too much time talking and not paying attention.”

When we asked what they missed most about Flatbush, Tamar responded,“the music and art opportunities are something I haven’t been able to find an outlet for as an adult. I loved, and was heavily involved in, the plays and music at Flatbush.” Jacob talked about his favorite Flatbush memory. “I was Color War captain my senior year and the experience was incredible.”

Tamar and Jacob are still in touch with a number of classmates, although staying in touch became a little more complicated when they made aliyah last year. They currently live in Jerusalem with their two young children.

zagha  Alissa (Schechter) Zagha (ES ‘79, HS ‘83) and Sammy Zagha (HS ‘83) met in Señora Stone’s Spanish class. In fact, Alissa changed seats to sit next to Sammy. Alissa said, "I was a Flatbush girl from the beginning, Sammy came to Flatbush in high school from Magen David. He was new and interesting.”
Although time has passed, they are still in touch with many people from their days at Flatbush and count quite a few among their friends and neighbors in Teaneck, NJ. Alissa said, “I am always struck by the camaraderie, the school spirit, and the positive feelings people have for Flatbush long after graduation.” 
 evenhar Sara (Pollac) Evenhar (ES ‘93, HS ‘97) and Oren Evenhar (ES ‘93, HS ‘97) aren’t just Flatbush sweethearts, they are also current Flatbush parents, watching their young children develop friendships and academic relationships that will last a lifetime. Additionally, Sara is a Ladies Auxiliary volunteer.  “Being able to give back to a place that gave me so much is such an enriching experience.”

Sara and Oren first met in second grade, after Oren moved here from Israel, but they did not become friends until high school. Strangely, they did not share any classes until AP Biology senior year. Sara said, “we would sit in the back of the room and push our desks together to be close.”

Oren’s third-grade teacher, Mrs. Dreyfuss, wound up being their son’s third-grade teacher. And now in high school, some of the rabbis (Rabbi Rosenblum, Rabbi Kramer, Rabbi Besser) are also teaching and advising the second generation of Evenhars. Sara said, getting to know the rabbis as a parent has been an amazing experience. “The camaraderie of our grade, and the love and caring for each other we felt in our class, made it all so special,” shared Sara.

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