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News > Community news > Commemorating Holocaust Memorial Day

Commemorating Holocaust Memorial Day

Fourth Year pupils inspired by life story of Holocaust survivor Ruth Posner...

To commemorate Holocaust Memorial Day, Fourth Year pupils attended a live webcast given by a remarkable lady, Ruth Posner who spoke about her experiences as a Holocaust survivor and the lessons that can be learnt.

Ruth was born in Warsaw in 1930. After the Germans invaded, Ruth remembers being thrown out of her home and marched to the Warsaw Ghetto. Ruth’s father arranged for her to work in a factory making leather goods. It was hard, slave labour. She managed to escape and assumed a false identity but during the Warsaw Ghetto uprising in 1943, she was taken prisoner and sent to Germany. She was imprisoned as a Polish Catholic as opposed to a Jew.

Towards the end of the war, the Germans put Ruth on a train which ended up in the town of Essen. The Allies were bombing the town and many around Ruth were killed. She hid on a local farm until liberation. After the war Ruth discovered that both of her parents had been killed at Treblinka and her cousins, aged 6 and 8, had been shot by the SS whilst in hiding.

While this was a tragic story, Ruth remained so positive in sharing it. Her overriding message was “never generalise”, as that is when prejudice sets in and hate-filled words can lead to horrendous outcomes. She also said that “tolerance is so important… and we need to appreciate the differences between people, not use those differences to discriminate."

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