Carl and Dorothy Bennett Center for Judaic Studies at Fairfield University to host annual Holocaust Remembrance Service

Carl and Dorothy Bennett Center for Judaic Studies at Fairfield University to host annual Holocaust Remembrance Service

Westport resident Anita Schorr, a survivor of the Terezin, Bergen-Belsen, and Auschwitz concentration camps, will speak to Fairfield University students, faculty, staff, and friends at a Holocaust Remembrance Service on Tuesday, April 19, from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. in the Egan Chapel of St. Ignatius Loyola on Fairfield University's campus.

Schorr came to the United States in 1959, the only survivor of her family. She began her career in the advertising industry and has been a resident of Westport for the past 20 years. However, it was only 10 years ago, that she began to tell her survival story to audiences.

In the springtime, Schorr recalls her trials in the concentration camps to 20 or 30 different audiences. She mostly travels to different areas in Connecticut and New York, but she has been flown to places as far as Cincinnati to touch audiences with her memories.

Schorr believes it to be very important to keep the story of the Holocaust alive, and she feels that visiting people in the flesh is much more effective than any history book can be.

"A book can be taken off the shelf, and put right back on the shelf," said Schorr. "But a person revealing their past to you is like being there yourself."

Schorr has recently begun a new program in Westport with a group of five teenagers ages 17 to 18 with the goal of taking her story forward. She spent time with these young adults revealing the hardships she faced in the concentration camps so they can pass the story on for generations to come.

Schorr is gratified that in 50 years from now her story will still be heard. "It will not be just a remembrance of the past, but a part of the future," she said.

"It is going to be a very emotionally touching event to hear Anita Schorr recall her memories of the concentration camps," said Ellen Umansky, the Carl and Dorothy Bennett Professor of Judaic Studies, and Director of the Judaic Studies Program. "Reading about the Holocaust is one thing, but hearing a person recall his or her personal experiences is completely different. It is very important for people to hear what happened in order to make sure such an event does not occur in the future."

The Holocaust Remembrance Service is free and open to the public, but registration is requested. For information or to reserve a seat, please call the Carl & Dorothy Bennett Center for Judaic Studies of the College of Arts and Sciences at Fairfield University at (203) 254-4000, ext. 2066.

Posted On: 03-30-2005 10:03 AM

Volume: 37 Number: 214