Holocaust survivors to speak at Troy University Montgomery Campus

Posted: Wednesday, 17 October 2012

MONTGOMERY—Holocaust survivors Aisic and Riva Hirsch of Birmingham will share their stories during a free lecture at Troy University on Thursday, Oct. 25, in conjunction with the exhibit “Darkness Into Life: Alabama Holocaust Survivors Through Photography and Art,” currently on display at the Montgomery Campus.

The event will be held at 6 p.m. inside the Gold Room on the second floor of Whitley Hall. Admission is free and open to the public. Aisic and Riva are among the Holocaust survivors whose stories are featured in the “Darkness Into Life” exhibit, which features paintings, photographs and narratives detailing the stories of 20 survivors now living in Alabama.

Born in Poland, Aisic Hirsch was taken with his family to the Warsaw Ghetto in 1939. He was freed with the help of the Jewish “Save the Children” organization, and was later helped by a Catholic priest to blend in with the population of a nearby village, hiding in plain sight for three years until being liberated by the Russians.

Riva Schuster, from Romania, was separated from her family after being captured by the Germans in 1941. She was later rescued from a camp by partisans and spent two years in hiding at a Catholic convent, where she lived alone inside a tiny six-foot square bunker.

Aisic and Riva later met in Israel and were married in 1950. They moved to New York in 1962, and then to Birmingham in 1992 to be closer to their children and grandchildren.

In addition to the public lecture on Thursday, Aisic and Riva will speak to a group of local 8th graders on Friday, Oct. 26, at 9 a.m. inside the Gold Room. For more information about the lectures, contact history professor Dr. Dan Puckett at 334-241-5478 or dpuckett45442@troy.edu

The “Darkness Into Life” exhibit is on loan from the Birmingham Holocaust Education Center and will be on display at the Montgomery Campus through Nov. 30 inside Whitley Hall, Room 140. Admission is free and open to the public Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Part of TROY’s ongoing Year of Holocaust Remembrance, the exhibit will travel to Troy and Dothan in early 2013.

The “Darkness Into Life” exhibit is sponsored by a grant from the Alabama Humantities Foundation.

For more information about other events in the Year of Holocaust Remembrance, contact the Office of Sponsored Programs at 334-670-3102

Matt Clower or Andy Ellis
Troy Office of University Relations