Holocaust survivor visits Utica

The 'Jewish Community Federation of the Mohawk Valley' welcomed a holocaust survivor at their annual lecture series Tuesday.

Posted: Apr 10, 2018 10:45 PM
Updated: Apr 10, 2018 11:01 PM

UTICA -- The 'Jewish Community Federation of the Mohawk Valley' welcomed a Holocaust survivor at their annual lecture series Tuesday.

The event took place at the Jewish Community Center in Utica.

Frank Grunwald was invited to the event to share the story of his life during the Holocaust.

The Jewish Community Federation holds annual lectures to celebrate Holocaust Remembrance Day.

Grunwald was only nine-years-old when his family entered their first concentration camp.

After three years, he says he survived gas chambers and eventually escaped from Nazi captivity.

He says he loves sharing his story and giving first-hand knowledge of the tragic, historical event.

"I just hope that people continue to listen and be curious about what the survivors have to say,” Grunwald said. “And that they can apply the lesson in their own lives, in their own behavior. And then teach their own children, and then hopefully their grandchildren and so forth. So I hope it's being transferred over through the generations.”

Organizers say the lecture series was started more than 50 years ago by local Holocaust survivor, Helen Sperling.

Sperling passed away in 2015 but the lecture series continues as a way to carry on her legacy.

Grunwald says memories of the holocaust cross his mind every day, but he overcomes those feelings by trying to stay positive.

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