Remarkable woman

Sunday, March 2, 2014

The Czech Republic has produced scads of illustrious people, from Sigmund Freud to Martina Navratilova to Madeleine Albright. And one of its daughters, not a celebrity or politician, passed away last week at 110 years old. 

Her name was Alice Herz-Sommer, and she was the oldest-known survivor of the Holocaust. 

(Yes, I realize this is like the third "obit" post I've written on this blog, but this incredible woman is worth knowing about. Read on.)

Herz-Sommer, according to this Associated Press article in the National Post, was born in Prague and spent two years in the Terezin (Theresienstadt) concentration camp, about an hour northwest of here. An accomplished pianist, she says music kept her alive. A documentary was made about her last year and was nominated for an Oscar:

According to Wikipedia, around 140,000 Jews were sent to Terezin and over 33,000 died there. An estimated 88,000 were moved to other death camps like Auschwitz, where most of them were killed.
We learned about Herz-Sommer just today, which was sunny and promising and ripe for tree-climbing (as you can see from our walk in Stromovka Park with friend Beet). How did we miss the news about her last week while we were in Paris? What a remarkable woman!


  1. Sorry for having proof-readers eye, but you might like to add a further zero to your '88,00' figure in this post.


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