The winners of the Applemore College Year 8 Holocaust Memorial Day poster competition were rewarded with a very special trip to Chichester Cathedral, where Holocaust survivor Steven Frank shared his own personal story of World War II.
Steven, a Dutch Secular Jew, was just 5 years old when the Nazis invaded and occupied his country. One day his lawyer father went to work and never returned, then his family were sent to Westerbork transit camp followed by Theresienstadt Ghetto Camp.
He retold how a mix of luck, connections and his mothers’ integrity saved him and his two brothers’ lives on a number of occasions.
Out of 15,000 children to pass through Theresienstadt Ghetto Camp, Steven and his brothers were 3 of only 93 to survive.
After his talk Tamzin, one of the Applemore students commented “It was very emotional. I felt very sorry that Steven went through everything he did at such a young age. It made me think there should never be another war.”
The Applemore students had the chance to meet Steven, ask lots of questions and look at some of his artefacts from the Holocaust including his Star of David patch which he had been forced to wear.
On the 70th anniversary of Auschwitz’s liberation it was both a privilege and an honour to witness first-hand Steven’s determination to pass his memories on to another generation.