Kate Todhunter: Gratitude for NHS event with Holocaust survivor

Holocaust survivor Henia Lewin shared her story with NHS students last month.

Holocaust survivor Henia Lewin shared her story with NHS students last month. STAFF FILE PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

Published: 05-14-2024 4:55 PM

I would like to publicly express my gratitude to Professor Henia Lewin, as we marked Yom HaShoah or Holocaust Remembrance Day. Last April 11th, during Genocide Awareness Month, Northampton High School junior Maayan Seltzer organized a schoolwide event inviting Henia to share her powerful story of survival with a packed auditorium of NHS students. At 18 months of age, Henia along with her family were forced into a Nazi ghetto in Kaunas, Lithuania where she was hidden in a disguised pantry. Two years later, after most of her family was either murdered or deported, Henia’s parents were able to smuggle her to the relative safety of Christian friends. Unlike millions of other Jewish children, Henia was miraculously reunited with her parents who also survived the Holocaust. At times emotional, Henia told us about incredible acts of courage and compassion, resistance and rescue by Jews and Christians alike. Her dedication to sharing her story had a profound impact on the students who attended. One student who heard Henia speak stated, “I promise that we heard you. We all listened and tried our best to understand. I hope you know that our generation also cries when we think about all the people who went through the Holocaust, and we will keep telling your story.”

Kate Todhunter

Florence

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