Today millions of Americans remember the more than six million Jews that perished during World War II by observing Holocaust Remembrance Day. It's a scary thing to think that there are people who deny the horrific events of the Holocaust ever happened or that the Diary of Anne Frank is a forgery. Today in honor of the national holiday, I remember what I saw when I went to visit the memorials in Israel, Washington, DC, and here in New York City. Today, I reflect and pledge never to forget.
As the years go on, there are fewer and fewer survivors left to tell their story. Take a moment to honor their struggles with these 6 poignant quotes from Holocaust survivors & Jewish leaders:
Shep Zitler, Holocaust survivor:
When the war was over, we thought we had survived because we were smarter than other people. Then we talked to other survivors. Plenty of smart people died. We learned we were just luckier than they were.
Elie Wiesel, Jewish-American writer and Holocaust survivor:
That I survived the Holocaust and went on to love beautiful girls, to talk, to write, to have toast and tea and live my life -- that is what is abnormal.
Eva Galler, Holocaust survivor:
You need compassion to be able to talk out your grief. Time is the best doctor.
Jonathan Sacks, Chief Rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the Commonwealth:
Jews survived all the defeats, expulsions, persecutions, and pogroms, the centuries in which they were regarded as a pariah people, even the Holocaust itself, because they never gave up the faith that one day they would be free to live as Jews without fear.
Aharon Appelfeld, Israeli novelist:
The Holocaust is a central event in many people's lives, but it also has become a metaphor for our century. There cannot be an end to speaking and writing about it. Besides, in Israel, everyone carries a biography deep inside him.
Isak Borenstein, Holocaust survivor:
Sometimes I try to go back to my past, and it is unbelievable for me. Sometimes I think I am just dreaming.
Do you have a personal story related to the Holocaust?
Image via slgckgc/Flickr