Published with Sita’s permission
Dear Mr. Irwin:
I saw your article in the travel section of the Marin IJ about Leipzig. I am an 85 year old Holocaust survivor that grew up and went to school in Leipzig before the pogroms.
The tallest building in Leipzig from the photo was where my father worked. I would love to know if you know of any other people my age that are still living who emigrated from Leipzig.
I live on the Stanford University campus in California. I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
By Richard Irwin, Staff Writer
The history of Berlin can be quite dark. The Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe reflects the brutal Holocaust caused by Nazi Germany. Officials estimate that between five and six million Jews were killed in the Holocaust.
The 2,711 concrete stelae of the memorial are deceptive.
While the tops of the concrete blocks seem level from a distance, walking down into the memorial is quite an experience. Tourists will find themselves lost in the heart of it, with the blocks soaring as high as 15 feet above them.
The eerie silence is broken only by the murmuring of visitors navigating the sloping field. An underground center holds the names of all known Jewish Holocaust victims.
Another center, the Topography of Terror, traces the rise of the Gestapo and SS. The museum is actually on the site of the old headquarters. The buildings were largely destroyed by Allied bombing in 1945 and the ruins demolished after the war.
In 1987, the cellar of the Gestapo headquarters, where many political prisoners were tortured and executed, was found and excavated. It was turned into a memorial and museum.
Inside the new center, exhibitions follow the many groups that fell victim to the Nazi regime — gypsies, homosexuals, handicapped. All were slain by the thousands.
After a while, the nightmare of Nazi Germany became too much. We left.
For more information, visit www.visitBerlin.com