Kent State East Liverpool Hosting Holocaust Remembrance Day

East Liverpool – Kent State University at East Liverpool presents its annual Holocaust Remembrance observance on May 3 with a book-signing and lecture, including a candle-lighting observance, open to the public.

Beginning at 10 a.m. that day, Dr. Ronni Sanlo will be in the Barnes & Noble Bookstore, located on the second floor of Purinton Hall, to sign copies of her book The Solider, the Avator and the Holocaust: WWII Germany, Jan.-May, 1945.”

Sanlo, who was born in East Liverpool, explained that the book is based on letters her father, Sanford “Sandy” Lebman, wrote to her mother, Lois, from the battlefront in 1945, as well as on research at the National Military Archives, the U.S. 42nd Rainbow Division archives and visits to the Dachau Concentration camp near Munich, Germany.

“I was born in East Liverpool, as were my parents and siblings. We moved to Miami in 1954 and I've never been back,” Sanlo noted. “The hero in my book is my father and there's a full chapter about his wife (my mother) as a 19-year-old bride in 1945. The descriptions of East Liverpool are accurate based on my parents' memories. So I feel like I'm returning to my home town to share the journey my parents experienced there when they were young.”

Another central character in the book, Beth, discovers the reasons young U.S. soldiers went to war and how battle affected them, and she watches with intense, painful horror as they enter the gates of the concentration camp.

Sanlo writes that “the purpose of the book is to show a new generation of readers the reality of the Holocaust so that it’s not forgotten.”

Growing up, she attended Hebrew school and Jewish youth groups throughout her high school years. She earned a bachelor’s degree in music from the University of Florida, where she majored in music performance and minored in English. She then earned a master of education degree, with a concentration in counseling. In 1996, she graduated from the University of North Florida with her doctor in education degree.

At 5:30 p.m., guest lecturer Jenniffer Weber will provide a glimpse into the life of Holocaust survivor, Magda Herzberger, including her early life and her exposure to anti-Semitism.

Weber, from Martins Ferry, Ohio, became interested in the Holocaust after traveling to Israel with her church and visiting Yad Vashem, the Holocaust Museum. Soon after, she became a volunteer for Classrooms Without Borders (CWB), a non-profit Holocaust education organization based in Pittsburgh.

In 2013, Weber met Herzberger at a CWB event. “This was a life-changing moment, as I knew that, somehow, my purpose and path were taking a significant shift,” she noted.

Since then, Weber designed and wrote a photo inspiration book, A True Inspiration, which is a reflection of Herzberger’s inspirational quotes, through the lens of nature. Weber also returned to Israel and accompanied Herzberger during her presentations, poetry readings and workshops across the country. She also dedicated Herzberger’s book, Survival, to Seton Hill University’s National Catholic Center for Holocaust Education.

During her presentation, Weber will discuss how creativity helped Herzberger survive Auschwitz-Birkenau, Bremen and Bergen-Belsen concentration camps, sharing her poems and passages from her book. The presentation also includes a video message from Herzberger as she recounts the horrors of the Holocaust.

Weber is a graduate of West Virginia Northern Community College, West Liberty University and earned a graduate certificate in genocide and Holocaust studies from Seton Hill University. She is currently pursuing a masters of art education degree at WLU.

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POSTED: Monday, April 24, 2017 01:47 PM
Updated: Wednesday, March 29, 2023 12:20 PM