Kristallnacht at 75: Pogrom as Prelude
Community-wide program will be Sunday, November 10, 7 p.m. at AJ
[by Cantor David Lipp]
When Ilse and Mike Meyer, z”l, were alive, I promised them I would make sure there was a Kristallnacht commemoration every five years. Sunday night, November 10, at 7 p.m. will be the third time I’ve kept that promise.
As most who could have given first-person testimony are no longer with us, we need to hear from those locally who remain, Hans Bensinger and Ann Dorzback. Others, who were very young at the time – Carl Bensinger, Dan Streit and Fred Gross –primarily will share experiences of their parents.
Fred Gross’ parents left Germany in 1923 soon after the famous Beer Hall Putsch that made the 9th of November a day of celebration for the Nazis – a perfect pretext for a pogrom 15 years later.
We will also hear from grandchildren of those who survived. Rachel Klein will share her great grandfather’s letter to her grandfather Elias, witness to the expulsion of Polish Jews from Germany and the tragic limbo in which most found themselves, trapped in a no-man’s-land between two virulently anti-Semitic nations.
Ilse and Mike Meyer’s granddaughter Monica Meyer, studying to be a rabbi and serving as an intern at Temple Shalom, will share her own thoughts of her grandparents’ families’ experiences.
Finally, one of Fred Whittaker’s students will share a teaching from the one man who taught the Holocaust more extensively than any in recent history, Ernie Marx.
The participation of clergy from every synagogue and the Concert Choir of Ballard High School will set the tone for the evening.
The community is invited.