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June 19, 2015  RSS feed

Text: T T T

Holocaust Museum volunteer shares personal story of survival

Marie Silverman Marie Silverman Marie Silverman, a Holocaust Survivor who volunteers at the Florida Holocaust Museum and speaks to student tour groups, shared her story with guests at the museum recently, telling how she hid from, was captured by and escaped from Nazis.

Silverman spoke during a program hosted by Tampa’s Debbie and Brian Taub that was designed to teach folks more about the museum’s exhibits, programs and outreach. Debbie Taub volunteers at the museum as a docent and Brian Taub serves on museum’s board of directors.

Marie, born in France, lived with her parents and sister in Belgium, where the girls attended school and took violin lessons. Their lives were forever altered when Germany invaded Antwerp in 1940.

Her family went into hiding in a cellar in France, but she and her mother and sister were taken to a deportation camp after the Gestapo found them. Marie and her sister were smuggled from the camp and again went into hiding. They were eventually reunited with their parents, although their father died shortly afterward.

Marie and her sister went with their aunt and uncle to Spain, then on to the U.S., leaving their mother behind. The three reunited in 1949.

Elizabeth Gelman, museum executive director, explained the importance of Silverman’s presentation and those of other local survivors.

“The museum’s focus on individual narratives is designed to create a relationship between the past and present. Visitors who listen to a Holocaust survivor speak and view the museum’s exhibitions become witnesses to these authentic stories and a link to history,” she said.

The Florida Holocaust Museum is at 55 Fifth St. S. in downtown St. Petersburg. For more information, call (727) 820-0100.

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