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Face to Face With History: Melbourne Students Meet Holocaust Survivor
Posted On:
Friday, October 12, 2018
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On October 3rd , a group of students and faculty from Melbourne High School attended a special program at the Clinton Presidential Center featuring Holocaust survivor Ben Stern. Near Normal Man, an award winning documentary film, details Stern’s harrowing experiences in surviving two ghettos, nine concentration camps, and two death marches. After viewing the film, students got a first-hand account from Stern about his experience with infamous Nazi physician Josef Mengele, his liberation by the American army, and the aftermath of World War I.

Stern also detailed his more recent encounters with Nazism, notably in Skokie, Illinois in 1977 and in Charlottesville, Virginia in 2017. Mr. Stern and his daughter Charlene Y. Stern, who produced and directed the film, spoke to students about the importance of forgiveness, hope, and taking a stand. “I learned that not stopping hate speech can cause things to become so much worse,” said sophomore Kaleb Cruz. “You’ve got to keep fighting through, no matter what. He never gave up through everything that happened to him,” added eighth grade student Ashtyn Kimble.

This event was sponsored by the Ben J. Altheimer Charitable Foundation. For more information on Holocaust Survivor Ben Stern and his movement Not Here, Not Now, visit www.nearnormalman.org. Thank you to the bus drivers and faculty chaperones who attended this trip, and a special thank you to Ms. Kristy Sanders and Mrs. Peggy Haney for your hard work planning and preparing this experience for our students!

 

 Holocaust survivor Ben Stern shaking hands with some of our students

 

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