Holocaust survivor Eva Schloss, a stepsister of Anne Frank, is visiting Oceanside Middle School on Oct. 24 to share her story.
At the event, titled “A Historic Evening with Anne Frank’s Stepsister,” Schloss will tell teenagers and adults of all faiths about what it was like knowing Frank. She will also share her experiences of growing up under the Nazi regime and discuss what it means to be a Holocaust survivor, which includes her time at the Auschwitz-Birkenau Nazi concentration camps.
“We felt that we should do something that is very meaningful, very powerful and universal,” said Rabbi Levi Gurkov, the co-director of Chabad of Oceanside, the organization sponsoring the event.
Gurkov said there are many reasons to have the event, including commemorating the 80th anniversary of Kristallnacht, which was when Nazis in Germany torched synagogues, vandalized Jewish homes, schools and businesses and killed nearly 100 Jews on Nov. 9 and 10, 1938. He added that in the wake of a blue swastika being scribbled outside of an Oceanside family’s home in February, the event would serve as a reminder of what Jewish people have had to overcome.
“We would like to make sure that people are aware of what the history of this is,” Gurkov said.
Schloss, 89, lives in England and was recently featured in a New York Times documentary, which depicted her taking part in a virtual Holocaust testimonial project.
Gurkov said he was grateful to the Oceanside School District, the Chabads of West Hempstead, Mineola and Brookville and the many other partners who helped organize the event. He added that he expects more than 700 people to attend.
Gurkov said he hopes the event will teach attendees “not only tolerance, but more important, acceptance.”