Award-winning Documentary about Roman Jews during the Nazi Occupation to Be Shown at Ocean County Library, Toms River

Posted on June 9, 2017 By

What was the experience of Roman Jews living in Nazi occupied Rome? The public is invited to a free screening, an adult program, of the award-winning documentary film Oro Macht Frei (Gold Will Set You Free), Thursday, June 29, 2017, from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. in the Toms River Branch of the Ocean County Library, 101 Washington Street, Toms River, N.J.  Oro Macht Frei won the Best International Documentary award out of 15 submissions at the 2015 Garden State Film Festival.

Joel Markel, founder and president of Preferred Home Health Care & Nursing Services, Eatontown, and host of Preferred Company’s radio show on WOBM–AM, live Monday through Friday, 8:00 to 10:00 a.m., is the executive producer and founder of Ottimo Films, which created the 70-minute documentary that tells the story of the Roman Jewish experience during the Nazi occupation of Rome, September 1943 through June 1944.

The film seeks to create a personal reflection of the Holocaust in Italy by weaving testimony from Roman Jews who lived there with the historical research of Susan Zuccotti, Alexander Stille, and Liliana Picciotto.

“I made this film not only to tell of the Holocaust in Italy but as a way of eradicating hatred and bigotry throughout the world,” said Markel. “My wish would be for it to be shown in schools and institutions worldwide. It is our responsibility as adults to point young minds to healthy and free directions in a world of peace.”

Joel Markel, the son of a Hungarian Auschwitz survivor, wanted to honor the experience of his mother and the millions of victims of the Jewish genocide by contributing to the field of Holocaust memory. In 2004, during a tour of the Roman Ghetto, Markel first heard the story of Kappler’s Gold, an extortion plot perpetrated by Herbert Kappler, the head of the SS, who demanded 50 kilos of gold within 36 hours or 200 Jewish family heads would be deported. Markel immediately felt connected to this story because for generations his family had worked as jewelers.

To register or for more information, call 732-349-6200 or; or contact Lisa Gallicchio, director of community relations at Preferred Home Health Care & Nursing Services, at 732-547-9886 or

About Joel Markel: Joel Markel is the founder and president of Preferred Home Health Care & Nursing Services (PHHC), Eatontown, a company that provides a wide range of medical and non-medical home health care services from pediatric to geriatric care throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania. He and his wife Stephanie recently received a recognition award for their long-term commitment to the Homeless Health Initiative (HHI), a volunteer outreach program run by Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). PHHC provides home care for individuals in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.