On December 12th, 2018, I saw the news story: Alter Wiener (64735), a Holocaust survivor, has died. Another Holocaust survivor has died, but Alter blazed a trail in his conviction to spread love and hope in the wake of terror and hate. Alter dedicated the latter part of his life to Holocaust education, and he wrote the memoir FROM A NAME TO A NUMBER.
Another story that we are charged to uphold in the name of justice, in the name of remembrance, and in the name of love. Another story that we must never forget. Alter was a man of many words, and he left his mark on society through his passion to bring hope to hopeless. Alter had survived several concentration camps including Auschwitz, and despite his experiences, he still spread love and joy to all of those around him.
Alter's unique view of civilization made him a personable individual, and his passion for education could be felt in the many speeches he gave around the United States. His words will forever ring in the ears of those who gave him the moment to speak, and these words will live on through his memoir.
Alter may be gone, but he will never be forgotten. In his death, it is important to continue his legacy. It is important to teach other people about the Holocaust, and it is important to spread love in the face of hatred. It is upon us, as a civilization, to spread hope to the hopeless.
Alter's actions in the state of Oregon left an impact on the community at large. Alter had spoken to the Oregon State Senate Education Committee regarding mandating Holocaust and genocide education in the school systems (CNN). Alter's wish to spread love instead of hate left a deep impact on those he spoke to, and ultimately, has left a legacy that will impact generations to come.
Another Holocaust survivor has died. We have to continue to spread Alter's message of love in the face of hate. We have to continue to educate the new, current, and old generations regarding the Holocaust. We have to continue to document the life of the victims and survivors of the Holocaust. We have to continue to bring society together - no matter who works to tear it apart.
Parlier, S. & Zdanowicz, C. (2018). This Holocaust survivor is pushing schools to teach students about genocide. CNN. Retrieved from https://www.cnn.com/2018/09/28/us/holocaust-taught-oregon-trnd/index.html
*IMAGE pulled from: Wiener, A. (2018). Alter Wiener's Images. Alter Wiener. Retrieved from http://www.alterwiener.com/images.php