Holocaust survivor Esther Bauer to recount her experience

Esther Bauer will recount her harrowing experience living through the Holocaust at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 27 in the Bazarsky Lecture Hall. All students, faculty and staff are invited to attend the lecture, which is sponsored by the Campus Activities Board’s spotlight committee.

Bauer’s father, Dr. Alberto Jonas, was the principal of the Jewish Girls School, and her mother, Dr. Marie Anna Jonas, was a medical doctor. As early as World War I, her mother was confronted with anti-Semitism from soldiers who refused to be attended on by a Jewish Red Cross nurse.

On July 19, 1942, Bauer and her parents were deported to the Theresienstadt Ghetto in what is now the Czech Republic. While her father died six weeks later of meningitis, her mother worked as a doctor in the ghetto, where there were practically no medicines.

After two years in Theresienstadt, Bauer married because her then-friend, not yet husband, was to be sent with many others to Dresden to build up a new ghetto. That was a lie, as he and the other men wound up in Auschwitz. After the men had left, their spouses were told they could go voluntarily after their husbands. Bauer went, and they all landed in Auschwitz, where her husband was murdered.

On Oct. 10, 1944, Bauer’s mother was deported to Auschwitz and murdered. She survived and from Auschwitz was transported to a women’s labor camp in Freiberg, a satellite camp of Flossenburg concentration camp. As allied troops neared, Bauer was further transported to the Mauthausen concentration camp in Austria. U.S. troops liberated the camp on May 5, 1945.

For more information on Bauer’s lecture, or to reserve seats, contact Jivanto van Hemert, Campus Activities Board spotlight director, at jivanto.vanhemert@salve.edu.

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