The Simon Wiesenthal Center gave its Humanitarian Award, its highest honor, to actor and producer Tom Cruise for his longtime support of the center's Museum of Tolerance.
Brad Grey, Chairman and CEO of Paramount Pictures presented Cruise with the award, as his wife actress Katie Holmes watched from the audience.
“Our challenge, ladies and gentlemen, is to make sure that we do all in our power to see to it that there will be no more Auschwitz-Birkenaus, no more Rwandas, no more Darfurs on our planet. That our children and their children may be free to live in a world where men and women are judged by their accomplishments and deeds rather than by their race or religion,” Cruise said after receiving the award.
The Wiesenthal Center also presented Medals of Valor to: Luis Alberto Urzúa, the foreman of the 33 trapped Chilean miners who guided the men through their ordeal.
Gyöngyi Magó, a Catholic schoolteacher in Hungary determined to keep the memory of the Holocaust alive despite a backlash from the growing far-right was also presented an award, as well as Peter Bergson who challenged the Roosevelt government and establishment Jewish organizations to make the rescue of Europe’s Jews a top priority during the Holocaust. .
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