Black River Technical College in collaboration with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM) will host Holocaust survivor Martin Weiss for three presentations October 29-30. Weiss will be speaking at 9:30 a.m. both Tuesday and Wednesday mornings, and 7:00 p.m. Tuesday evening. All presentations will be held in the Randolph County Development Center auditorium on the BRTC-Pocahontas campus.
According to the USHMM website, Martin (Marty) Weiss was born January 28, 1929, in Polana, Czechoslavakia, to Jacob and Golda Weiss. In May 1944, at the age of 15, Marty and his family, including eight siblings, were deported from Hungary to Auschwitz-Birkenau.
His presentation will include the tragic story of what happened to him and his family at the hands of the Nazis. His experiences included not only the time at Auschwitz-Birkenau, but also his time at Mauthausen Concentration Camp where they were forced to carve tunnels into the sides of mountains and where Marty’s father died from exhaustion and starvation. As the Allies advanced into Germany in the spring of 1945, Marty and other inmates went on a forced march to Gunskirchen, another sub-camp of Mauthausen, from where he was liberated by the United States Army on May 5th, 1945.
After liberation, Marty eventually immigrated to the United States where he served in the Army during the Korean War. Marty has been a volunteer at USHMM since 1998.
“This will be the ninth Holocaust survivor to speak at BRTC as part of the Remembering the Holocaust – Survivor Series, which began in April 2006 when we partnered with USHMM,” noted Dina Hufstedler, Director of Community Development and event coordinator. “The series started with one presentation, but quickly grew to three to accommodate all of the area school groups that want to attend. We currently have over 1800 students from around the area scheduled to attend next week’s presentations.”
The presentations are free and open to the public. Sponsors of the event are: SEAS Project of the BRTC Foundation; Mike and Barbara Dunn; First National Bank of Walnut Ridge, Hoxie, Pocahontas and Bono; Dean and Brenda Gillogly; and Integrity 1st Bank.
For more information or to schedule a group, contact Dina Hufstedler at 870-248-4187 or Jessica McFadden at 870-248-4189.