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Article posted: 4/6/2013 8:00 AM

Holocaust survivor to speak in Elgin

By Elena Ferrarin

The stories told by Holocaust survivors are apt to stick with you for a long, long time.

But Renee Haberer-Krauss' story is one of a kind, even for someone like Gale Jacoby, a daughter of Holocaust survivors.

Jacoby is the adult education chairman at Congregation Kneseth Israel in Elgin, where Haberer-Krauss will speak on Sunday for Holocaust Remembrance Day, or Yom HaShoah.

"I've grown up with stories, to me that's normal," Jacoby said. "My family, my husband's family, family friends, everyone we know in our small inner circle has stories. But hers is different from anyone's we've ever heard before."

At 80 years old, Haberer-Krauss, of Highland Park, is among the youngest remaining Holocaust survivors.

"Many of those who are still alive are too old to tell their story to a big group," Jacoby said.

Haberer-Krauss, Jacoby said, "is young for a Holocaust survivor, she's articulate, and her story is fascinating -- a little different than most of them."

As a little girl, Haberer-Krauss was brought to a concentration camp along with her sister, parents and grandparents, Jacoby said.

Her father became involved with the resistance movement inside the camp, and in turn secured protection for his two daughters.

"She remembers everything, crystal clear," Jacoby said. "I asked how she remembers everything, and she said, 'You remember. This, you remember. No matter how young you are."

CKI is at 330 Division Street in Elgin. the event begins at 4 p.m. a with a brief memorial ceremony. Haberer-Krauss' talk will be followed by a question-and-answer session. For information call (847) 741-5656.

Sunday's event is open to the community and appropriate for children, Jacoby said.

"I'm hoping that it makes the atrocities of the Holocaust. more real for people, that its not just a page in the history book," she said.

"Once they heard from a real, live person, it becomes real event for them," she said. "And once it becomes a real event for them, I hope it makes them fight against injustice in the world, and fight for tolerance in the world."

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