Shoah Commemoration April 23-25, 2017

Shoah Commemoration April 23-25, 2017

Our guest this year was Renata (nee Polgar) Laxova. She was born on July 15th 1931 in Brno, in what was then Czechoslovakia. She was an only child in an average middle class Jewish family, raised to speak both Czech and German. Her father was an accountant, her mother stayed at home with her. She had a peaceful, happy, secure childhood and enjoyed swimming, ice-skating, gymnastics. When I was in second grade, in March 1939, Hitler marched into my country which became the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia.
Slovakia became an independent republic and a client state of Nazi Germany. Toward the end of my second grade, Jewish children were no longer allowed to participate in the school or community activities. Jewish children were no longer welcome at schools. Through Renata’s parents’ initiative, she was included in one of Sir Nicholas Winton’s Kindertransports.

On July 31,1939, she was taken to the Prague railway station and left – on the fifth Kindertransport from Czechoslovakia – for England. The war began on September 1, 1939. She spent 7 years, cared for by a Lancashire Quaker family, a father (a conscientious objector) mother, with their 5 ½ year old little boy.

Her parents survived the war. In 1941, they were accused by the Gestapo of being part of an international spy network and were expelled from Brno to Slovakia, her father’s birthplace. Her mother assumed a stranger’s identity and documents and survived as an unmarried nurse in Slovakia. Her father was sent to several labor and concentration camps. Her parents were reunited after Czechoslovakia was liberated in 1945.

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Holocaust Commemoration

Guest: Dr. Renata Laxova

A child survivor from Brno, Czechoslovakia who was rescued by the Kindertransport arranged by Sir Nicholas Winton in 1939.
She returned to her country and lived under Communist rule until the Prague Spring 1968 when she and her family left for England and then the United States.

April 23, 2017 – 3:30 PM – Commemoration Service

Samuel Lutheran Church
Corner of 8th Street and Muskegon Avenue

April 24, 2017: 6:30 PM – Witness and Conversation

First Evangelical Lutheran Church

April 25, 2017: 12:30 pm – Witness and Conversation

West Shore Community College, Ludington

For more information:
Call: Congregation B’nai Israel, 231-722-2702


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