Editor’s Note: A group of local teachers is visiting Auschwitz, Poland, this week to mark the 75th anniversary of the camp’s liberation. The week-long trip is being led by Terre Haute-based CANDLES Holocaust Museum and Education Center, which was founded by Holocaust survivor Eva Kor, who died in July 2019. The educators are sharing their experiences with Journal Review readers. This is the second installment in a six-part series.
On Tuesday, several teachers from Montgomery County stood in the exact spot where Eva Kor and her sister, Miriam, breathed their first breaths of freedom exactly 75 years ago.
Their liberation came after spending many months in constant torture and fear while imprisoned at Auschwitz I Concentration Camp near Krakow, Poland. The camp was very sobering and touching in ways many of us didn’t expect.
We saw rooms of nothing but shorn hair used for textiles, unmatched piles of shoes, eye glasses piled into a huge tangle of metal and glass, and mountains of abandoned suitcases with names and countries, printed by the hands of owners who would never claim them.
During all of this, Eva was in the front of all of our minds, especially when we arrived at Block 10. Here Eva and her twin sister Miriam would have every part of their bodies measured, blood drawn and mysterious substances injected into them.
While millions lost their lives during the Holocaust, Eva and Miriam were fortunate to walk, hand in hand, out of the camp. Eva had successfully reached her only goal. She and her sister had survived.
Amy Carrington and Sharon McLean are educators at Crawfordsville Middle School.