12 Deals of Christmas
AMBER ALERT – Share to help find missing 1-year-old

West Hartford synagogue hosts voices of hope on Holocaust remembrance ceremony

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

WEST HARTFORD --  Nearly 75 years after the Holocaust, people around the world work to not forget the brutalities of those years.

Sunday was  Holocaust Remembrance Day and it marked a day when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated in 1945.

"A person who was not there can't imagine what I went through", said Elizabeth Deutsch, a 91-year-old Fairfield resident who survived the Holocaust.

She shares her story so that others don't forget.

"It's the hunger, the work, seeing men everyday with their dog, electric fence, and then mostly, mostly the crematorium in Auschwitz-Birkenau," said Deutsch. "It was terrible. To see the flames, the smoke. It was so, so terrible."

Deutsch told FOX61 News how she survived the Holocaust right as she believed she was going to be shot and killed by Nazi soldiers.

"A miracle happened. All of a sudden the sky was full of airplanes," said Deutch. "We were so scared. What's going to happen to us? Then we heard the truckloads. Soldiers came with motorcycles, with trucks and they came to us and they told us that the war was over and it was May 2, 1945."

Today, Betty was one of four survivors given the Chesed award for her exemplary acts of love and kindness at a remembrance ceremony held by the organization Voices of Hope.

Part of that love and kindness is in sharing her story.

"Go to schools, go to colleges, tell your neighbors, tell everyone what happened to you, what you went through and then my heart opened up," said Deutsch.

Voices of Hope takes Holocaust Survivors and their children and shares their stories so future generations never forget what happened in those years.

"It's important that we do remember, but also not forget," said Jeff Israel, a board member of Voices of Hope. "No one has really learned. It's, what, almost 75 years since the Holocaust ended and there's been so many other actions around the world like the Holocaust."

Voices of Hope said 45 percent of Americans can't name a concentration camp. A bill passed in 2018 makes Connecticut the 10th state where it is mandatory for schools to teach students about the Holocaust and Genocide in their Social Studies Curriculum.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.