Holocaust survivor to speak at Viterbo in April - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

Holocaust survivor to speak at Viterbo in April

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Sam Harris Sam Harris

LA CROSSE, Wisconsin (WXOW) - A child who survived the Holocaust speaks next month at Viterbo University.

Sam Harris appears in the Viterbo University Fine Arts Center Main Theater April 11 at 7 p.m.  The event is free and open to the public.

His story begins in 1939 when Germany invaded his native Poland.  Harris, born Szlamek Rzeznik, and his family were forced into a ghetto in hometown of Deblin.

In 1942, as his family was on the way to deportation when his father pushed him out of line and told him to run and hide.  He'd never saw any of them again.

He survived by hiding when the Germans turned the Deblin ghetto into a concentration camp, then another forced move to another camp later in the war.  He was freed by the Russian in 1945.

Harris was eventually brought to the United States, where he was adopted in 1948.

The presentation by Harris is in conjunction with the university's annual Teaching the Holocaust Workshop for educators and part of the D.B. Reinhart Institute for Ethics in Leadership Spring Lecture Series.

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