Berkeley’s ninth annual Holocaust Remembrance Day event on Sunday includes readings and talks with two Holocaust survivors, Murray Gordon and Lucille Eichengreen. It will be held on Sunday at 10:30 a.m. at the Freight and Salvage Coffeehouse on Addison.
Gordon was a resistance fighter against the Nazis in the then-Soviet Union, derailing supply trains, blowing up bridges and gathering intelligence. He was shot five times and later captured and sent to Dachau concentration camp. Eichengreen survived the Lodz Ghetto and the concentration camps at Auschwitz, Neuengamme and Bergen-Belsen. She has written about her experiences in three books, From Ashes to Life, Rumkowski, and Haunted Memories.
“It’s essential that we figure out a way to make history relevant to future generations and remembering the Holocaust is one way to do that,” said Berkeley City Councilmember Susan Wengraf. “It’s really critical that we be vigilant to prevent Holocausts from happening again.”
The Berkeley observance of Holocaust Remembrance Day was started by Councilmember Kriss Worthington. Wengraf said that almost all councilmembers have contributed to the event from their discretionary office accounts.
The theme of this year’s Remembrance Day across the country is “Justice and Accountability in the Face of Genocide: What Have We Learned?” Observances take place in many cities around the U.S. in the coming week.
According to Rita Clancy of Jewish Family & Children’s Services of the East Bay, there are an estimated 270 known Holocaust survivors in the East Bay. Clancy said there may well be more, but some do not come forward and may not know about the support services offered by the JFCS.
In addition to the speakers, Sunday’s event will have music from the trio, Veretski Pass. Veteran klezmer musicians, Veretski Pass perform traditional songs and melodies of Eastern Europe.