Holocaust: The Holocaust and Survivor Remembers Essay

Submitted By joecoschigano
Words: 1124
Pages: 5

Joe Coschigano
Mrs. Schumacher/Lafaso
June 3, 2012
English 9-R
Research Paper

During the Holocaust 11 million people died, 6 million of which were Jews, but only a few in comparison rose above all, overcoming the evil and even helping others. Most of the Jews were sent to death camps and work camps. Many Jews and prisoners were moved to ghettos for “safe keeping.” The Holocaust occurred during WWII when Germany was invading Poland under the German command of Adolf Hitler. Adolf Hitler was the cause of WWII and the Holocaust because of his anger and personal unhappiness; he took out his hatred on those he considered less valuable, imperfect human beings with genocide. In the Documentary, One Survivor Remembers, directed by Kary Antholis, the main character Gerda Weismann is an 18-year-old girl who is taken away from her mother, father, and brother, and sent to a work camp. In the novel, I Have Lived a Thousand Years, by Bitton-Jackson, a 14-year-old girl, Livia, tells of her difficulties of surviving the holocaust. To overcome the Holocaust the survivors had thoughts of hope and family. Holocaust survivors need a great deal of hope to outlast their horrific events. In the article, Here to Tell My Story, Gerda Weismann became hopeful when she made a bet with her friend that the war would be over in 6 months. Gerda is an 18-year-old girl that lived in Bielsko, Poland who was separated from her family, and her brother who is one of her best friends. “I was driven by the need to have children,” said Gerda (Sapp 19). She was very hopeful to become a mother, and used that strength to help her overcome the difficulties of the work camps. All she wants is a child; if she survived, she could have a child of her own. After the Holocaust Gerda had 3 children and 8 grandchildren, making her dream come true. In the document, Irena Sendler- Courage and Valor, Irena was a 29-year-old social worker whose mission was saving 2,500 children from the Warsaw Ghettos (Courage and Valor). Irena was raised a Catholic, she was taught to love and respect people, regardless of their religious beliefs. When she was 7-years-old, her father told her, “If you see someone drowning, you must try to rescue him or her even if you can not swim.” Irena was very hopeful that she could save the children in the Warsaw Ghetto showing much determination and a strong will. Irena would enter the Warsaw Ghetto 2 to 3 times daily to speak to Jewish parents about trusting her to get their children out of the ghetto, and into safety (Courage and Volar). According to the New York Times, she gave hope to both children and parents with helping children escape the ghettos by hiding in coffins, boxes, and gunnysacks. Babies were drugged to remain quiet, and older children were led through sewers and underground tunnels. The children’s hope was established by being given false identities, and being place in safe havens such as convents, orphanages, or Polish families (Courage and Valor). The hope and love Irena had for the children made her place their safety above her own. Another person that displayed hope was Andrée Peel in The Telegragh (Andrée Peel). She gave British and American pilots hope by helping them escape from France during WWII. Andrée Peel sends out flyers to every one stating, “France has lost the battle, but she has not lost the war,” giving many inspiration to continue fighting (Andrée Peel). Some members of the French Resistance told the Germans where Andrée could be found (Andrée Peel). She refused to give up the names of her associates who were helping her, or the location where she was hiding the soldiers. Because she did not divulge the information, the Germans broke her legs, “Stripped naked, interrogated and subjected to a series of tortures, including simulated drowning and being savagely beaten around the throat” (Andrée Peel). Yet, she still said nothing. “Although any family found harboring an Allied airmen risked being shot” (Andrée