The New Rochelle Public Library hosted noted 88 year old local author, scholar and speaker, Dr. Moshe Avital as he presented a Holocaust Remembrance program on Sunday, January 29 to commemorate International Holocaust Remembrance Day on January 27. As a survivor and an educator, Dr, Avital provided extraordinary testimony and said his faith brought him through the ordeal. He mentioned many unknown facts on the Holocaust and said it was the duty for the survivors to tell the story of what happened. His talk included a keen psychological, philosophical, and theological analysis, as well as reflections regarding the perpetrators of the Holocaust. This program was also done in conjunction with the exhibit, “L’dor Vador/From Generation to Generation: Portrait Photographs by Seth Harrison.”
At age 14, Moshe Avital and his family were expelled from their hometown of Bilke, Ruthenia, in Czechoslovakia, to the Ghetto Beregszasz. The Germans separated Avital from his family after they were deported to the Auschwitz Concentration Camp. He was imprisoned as a slave laborer in five other concentration camps before being liberated from Buchenwald by the U.S. Army on April 11, 1945. Avital began an arduous recuperation process along with 500 young people who were known as the Children of Buchenwald. He rebuilt his life, established his family, and became a recognized authority in Jewish education.
After the presentation, Dr. Avital, a New Rochelle resident, signed his latest book, Hope, Faith and Resilience: What the Germans Couldn’t Take From Us, for members of the audience.