The memorial to the 33,771 Jews murdered by the Nazis over a period of 24 to 36 hours. Residents of the area later said they heard gunfire for hours. The number killed in that short period was found in Nazi records.
Behind the menorah lies the Babi Yar ravine. The bodies, some not yet dead, subsequently were covered with dirt. Soils samples revealed the human remains, but it was decided to leave the bodies where they were and not to disturb them further.