NEW YORK, N.Y. – Thursday is International Holocaust Remembrance Day and in commemoration, 92-year-old survivor Elly Berkovits Gross is providing thousands of copies of her book, which tells her story so that the younger generation – who may not be aware of what happened – never forgets.
These days, Berkovits Gross enjoys painting in her Queens home, a far different life now compared to what she went through in the 1940s.
She was born in a small town in Romania. At only 15, she, her mother, and her brother were taken by cattle car to Auschwitz. She never saw them again.
In “Elly: My True Story of the Holocaust,” she details the horrific conditions that took the lives of 6 million Jews, but this book is targeted to children.
“It’s very good for the children to learn in school about the tragic history of the holocaust,” Berkovits Gross said. “The people, they forget about it, but they read the book and it’s always there written – the true story.”
She’s partnered with Scholastic Book Clubs, which is now getting 26,000 copies to children across the country.
Creative producer Traci Swain said this will keep young children educated.
“We want to make sure that people are aware of what happened and so Scholastic got involved to become a partner with her to make sure that this got into the hands of our teachers, the hands of our students, the hands of families,” Swain said.
Berkovits Gross isn’t alone in informing younger generations about the genocide. Survivor Lily Ebert, 98, uses TikTok with her great-grandson. Ebert has gained 1.6 million followers and brings awareness through her videos.
The survivors will repeat their stories until they’re no longer with us.
“The history is very rough but maybe, maybe when they read a book like mine, they could do something that history should not repeat,” Berkovits Gross said.