Heritage Florida Jewish News - Central Florida's Independent Jewish Voice

'I Remember' eyewitness series continues

 

Helen Greenspun

The Holocaust Center is continuing its monthly "I Remember: Eyewitnesses to the Holocaust" series with a conversation with local Holocaust Survivor Helen Greenspun. It will be on Sunday, March 20 at 2 p.m. at the Holocaust Center in Maitland. It is free and open to the general public, and reservations are not required. Information on this presentation and other programs at the Center can be found at http://www.holocaustedu.org or by calling 407-628-0555.

Born in the small town of Chmielnik, Poland, Greenspun was taken by Nazis as a teenager. During the next three years she survived labor camps, concentration camps, starvation and brutality. Miraculously, she and four of her siblings survived; their parents and youngest brother and sister died.

Instead of trying to forget the horrors and suffering that deprived her of a childhood, Greenspun has dedicated her life to telling others about the events that shaped her young life. In the past 30 years thousands of local students, teachers, and others have heard her story.

She provided her listeners with more than an eyewitness account of history; she has given them a human face and voice that helps them better understand the enormous losses of the Shoah.

In many ways, Greenspun exemplifies the courage and generosity of spirit that are essential to creating a more just, more welcoming community. Her willingness to share her story so many times, in spite of the personal pain and sacrifice required to do so, reflects her dedication to both the mission and the spirit of the Holocaust Center.

As she recalls her experiences, she says that she tells her story for her father, for the girls who died in the camps, and for all those who did not survive to speak for themselves. She touches hearts and minds; she sometimes evokes tears.

Greenspun's commitment has had an enormous impact on the lives of everyone who has heard her testimony. This is reflected in the hundreds of letters she has gotten from school children, thanking her for visiting them and helping them learn important lessons of compassion, tolerance, and respect.

Although she is no longer as active as she had been, she will join us as part of this series, speaking so that silenced voices are once again remembered.

 

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