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(courtesy of Peter Stango)

The symbol of these raised hands appears on Jack's grave marker and it spurred some research. 

We learned that it is from the Kabbalah, a body of mystic Judaism which incorporates extensive symbolism. A short explanation follows :

Using the Tree of Life, the Kabbalah built up a system of symbolic correspondences between the manifestations of divine powers, letters, numbers, and the different parts of the human body. We can see this in its explanation of the universally known symbol of raised hands conveying a blessing: "This is because there are ten fingers on the hands, a hint to the ten Sefirot by which the sky and the earth were sealed. And those ten correspond to the Ten Commandments. Each hand is bearing 16 letters corresponding to the 32 ways of wisdom of the first Sephirah, the Crown or Kether (quoted in Kabbalah, Three Thousand Years of Mystic Tradition, Kenneth Hanson, p. 117).

In every tradition we find the questions: Where do we come from? Who are we? Where are we going? and What caused "The Creation"? However, neither in the Kabbalah nor in any other tradition has a final answer yet been found. Whether it is the Unknowable of the Vedas or the Ain Soph of Judaism, this veiled truth remains a mystery. As Kenneth Hanson writes, the Kabbalah "counsels spirituality without narrow dogmatism. It admonishes reaching for the stars while keeping one's feet planted firmly on the ground."

Grave marker for Jack M. Zenker in Mount Ararat Cemetery, Farmingdale (Suffolk county), New York.

Jack enlisted in the Army at Ft Jay, Governors Island, NY on 20 June 1941.

A trained medic, T/4 Zenker was transferred from the 509th PIR to the 508th's Medical Detachment on 20 February 1945.

T/4 Zenker was awarded the Bronze Service Star Device for the Southern France Campaign and Airborne Operations.

Jack was discharged on 1 July 1945 and three months later married Pauline Lukaczer in a  ceremony held in the Park Central Hotel Seventh Ave & 55 St. NY, NY.

Jack was further honored by the State of New York when he was awarded the Conspicuous Service Medal on 10 July 1947.

To whom awarded:
The Conspicuous Service Medal may be awarded to any individual who shall have distinguished themselves by exceptionally meritorious service in a capacity of great responsibility. The service can be performed while in an active status by a member of the New York State Organized Militia, by a civilian in support of the New York State Organized Militia, or to other individuals who have provided support to the New York State Organized Militia and deemed appropriate by The Adjutant General.

The term "duty of great responsibility" will be interpreted to mean duty of such character that the exceptionally meritorious service performed has contributed in a high degree to the success of a command, installation or project. Superior performance of normal duty will not in itself constitute justification for the award of the Conspicuous Service Medal.


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