HCDSB Recognizes Holocaust Awareness Day, with Special Presentation by Holocaust Survivor, Max Eisen

On January 26th, 2018, the Halton Catholic District School Board participated in a board-wide recognition of the United Nations International Holocaust Awareness Day.

This year, Holocaust Awareness Day takes place on Saturday, January 27, 2018, on the anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp, which took place 71 years ago.

On January 26th, staff and trustees gathered to attend a special presentation by Holocaust survivor, Max Eisen at the Catholic Education Centre, to learn and gain a deeper understanding of what St. Pope John Paul II called, “the inhumanity with which the Jews were persecuted and massacred,” during the Holocaust in Europe.

Max Eisen provided a detailed account of his experiences during his 4 years living in a concentration camp. Tibor “Max” Eisen was born in Moldava, Czechoslovakia into an Orthodox Jewish family. He had an extended family of 60 members, and he lived in a family compound with his parents, his two younger brothers, his baby sister, his paternal grandparents and his uncle and aunt.

In the spring of 1944, 5 1/2 years after his region had been annexed to Hungary and the morning after the family’s yearly Passover Seder, gendarmes forcibly removed Eisen and his family from their home. They were brought to a brickyard and eventually loaded onto crowded cattle cars bound for Auschwitz-Birkenau.

At 15 years of age, Max Eisen survived the selection process and he was inducted into the camp as a slave labourer. After his liberation and new trials in Communist Czechoslovakia, Eisen immigrated to Canada in 1949, where he has dedicated the last 22 years of his life to educating others about the Holocaust across Canada and around the world.​

We are truly grateful to have Max Eisen here at the Halton Catholic Board, teaching our staff so that we may better understand the Holocaust, and share his messages for generations to come. ​


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