By Julie Muhlstein, Herald Columnist  -

It's a tangible piece of a terrible history. During a talk Wednesday at Everett Community College, Holocaust survivor Robert Herschkowitz passed around a mustard-yellow cloth Star of David. It is stamped with the letter J.

Framed in a small case, it doesn't look as old as it is. Like millions of other Jewish people in Europe, his grandmother was forced by the Nazis to wear the yellow badge more than 70 years ago.

Herschkowitz was a child from Belgium during World War II. To survive, his family fled their homeland. Their odyssey took them through France, into a Nazi-run camp and eventually through the Alps on foot to safety in Switzerland.

The Bellevue man has told his story before, at EvCC and to other groups around the region. Now 76, he continues to share his memories so that others will never forget.

His talk Wednesday was part of the annual EvCC “Surviving the Holocaust” speaker series, now in its 15th year. Humanities instructor Joyce Walker brings Holocaust survivors to campus for her Humanities 150D class. The talks are open to the public.

“It's always an honor to listen to him,” Walker said. “It's becoming increasingly difficult to hear the direct stories.” The first two speakers in this spring's series were descendants of people who lived through the Holocaust. Continue Reading

New photo of Seattle's Anne Frank Tree sapling - March 31, 2014

Anne Frank Tree 3-31-14

The Holocaust Center, in partnership with Seattle Parks and Recreation, was one of 11 organizations chosen to receive a sapling from the original Anne Frank Tree. After more than 3 years in quarantine, the sapling has arrived in Seattle! It will remain in the care of Seattle Parks and Recreation until it is ready to plant in the spring 2015. Stay tuned for more details about the planting ceremony!

KOMO News (Story & Video) - April 20, 2013
ABC News Story - March 23, 2013
The Sapling Project - Anne Frank Center USA

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Holocaust Center for Humanity

 

student-Boise-PeteM-3-14KTVB - BOISE -- More than 300 middle schoolers at Les Bois Junior High got a chance to learn a history lesson you just can't get out of a book Wednesday.

They gathered in the school's gym as Holocaust survivor Peter Metzelaar told the story of his life.

Metzelaar is fortunate to be alive.

Hiding from German soldiers for more than four years during World War II, he escaped death and torture in the Nazi concentration camps.

He now shares his story of survival with students across the country.

"I feel fortunate to be alive, and feel very sad," Metzelaar told KTVB when asked how he felt about the experience.

Angela Harvey is an 8th grade English teacher who studies and teaches Holocaust literature. She reached out to this survivor and helped bring him to Boise.

"When the students actually hear a Holocaust survivor's testimony, it becomes part of them," Harvey said. "It's different from seeing it in a book or a movie. They actually can carry that story on long after the Holocaust survivors are gone."

Students like Katherine Kerkman sat in silence for nearly two hours as Metzelaar spoke.

"I thought It was really interesting," Kerman said, adding that she learned more through actually meeting the man than simply researching the topic online.

Metzelaar's story is one of intense stress and good fortune. Read More

 

KTVB - BOISE

by Matt Standal. Posted on March 12, 2014
Photo courtesy of KTVB

 

Holocaust survivor, and member of the Holocaust Center's speakers burearu, Peter M., spoke to a crowd of students in Rockford, WA in November.  His arrival and his presentation were covered on the local tv news station. Watch Now.