CANDLES Next-Generation Speaker Series presents Hungarian Jews in the Holocaust: My Family's Story of Courage and Resilience with Tibor Klopfer
As each year goes by, the world is losing Holocaust survivors at a rapid rate, resulting in fewer and fewer opportunities for people to hear their stories first-hand. In response to the urgent need to document and preserve these legacies, second- and third-generation survivors are sharing their families' stories to make sure the lives of those affected by the Holocaust are not forgotten. Next-generation survivors are in a unique place in which they did not experience the historical trauma but are affected daily by their families' histories. Holocaust and genocide survivors' children and grandchildren tell the stories of their family members not only to put human faces on historical events but also to share their own experiences.
Tibor will present stories of his family’s experiences as Hungarian Jews in the Holocaust, using family photos, maps, and other illustrations. His mother was deported from a ghetto in rural Hungary to Auschwitz-Birkenau. She was moved to an industrial slave labor camp and ultimately was liberated from the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp. Tibor's father was processed through Auschwitz and worked in forced labor camps before being liberated from Dachau. He lost all his immediate family, including his first wife and two young daughters. Tibor's mother’s youngest brother, thirteen years of age at the beginning of the war, witnessed the devastation of his family and survived a whirlwind of farm and industrial forced labor camps before being liberated from a factory camp in Austria. Their stories, and the stories of other family members, put human faces on historical events and provide a perspective on the Holocaust that transcends sterile renditions of dates, events, and statistics.