Sir Martin Gilbert, noted Holocaust historian, died this week at the age of 78.

The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) mourned the loss of Sir Martin, saying his death was a “great loss” to the Jewish people, to the United Kingdom, and to academia.

Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, issued the following statement:

Sir Martin Gilbert was much more than the greatest biographer of Winston Churchill. He was a devoted and proud Zionist, who made huge contributions to the understanding and the origins of the modern Jewish state.

His book on the maps of Israel alone helped clear up many misunderstandings about the history of Israel. His book, Churchill and The Jews, explored Churchill’s own Zionism and contributions in support of a Jewish state, while not ignoring some of the classic stereotypes about Jews which crept into comments and statements by the great British leader.

Sir Martin’s death is a great loss to the Jewish people, and his decision to be buried in Israel, as his life itself, speaks volumes about his commitment to everything Jewish.

Gilbert wrote many books on Jewish subjects, including two landmark volumes, The History of the Jews and Jerusalem in the Twentieth Century. Another powerful work Never Again: A History of the Holocaust, was praised and valued for its very specific descriptions of the horrors Jews endured in Nazi-occupied areas, and The Righteous: the Unsung Heroes of the Holocaust made better known the stories of courageous men and women who set moral examples for all.