Malcolm Lewis, one of the founders of the campaign in Britain for Soviet Jewry, has been killed at the tragically young age of 29 in a car crash in Israel. He leaves a widow, Yael, and a month-old son.
Malcolm was one of the handful of idealistic students in the rnid-1960s who showed the way which the community followed in the 1970s. He believed it his duty to establish a wave of protest about the fate of the forgotten three million Jews of the Soviet Union.
Using the Jewish student body as his base, he initiated marches of thousands to the Soviet Embassy, organised rallies at Simchat Torah and created a level of awareness which continues until today.
He gave the thinking young Jews of the post-war generation a sacred cause, a sense of purpose and a set of values. His personality persuaded many to devote themselves to an unrecognised and seemingly hopeless issue.
On finishing his studies at Cambridge, he went on aliya. In Israel, he became involved with the World Union of Jewish Students and was elected its treasurer. Even so, he still found time to work for Soviet Jewry and organised numerous projects. He also believed passionately in the need for Arab-Israeli understanding and served in the Yom Kippur war.
Malcolm was a deeply religious Jew yet his universalist and tolerant spirit and his great love of life touched even the most secular of those who came into contact with him. A man of integrity and principle, he was a loyal colleague.