SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Sunday marked 77 years since the Holocaust ended.
Each year survivors get to share their stories with local students. These stories are told so they are never forgotten. Teaching the younger generation about the tragedy that killed six million Jews.
Hundreds of students listened as Mark Schonwetter shares his story as a young boy living through the holocaust.
Schonwetter is one of nine survivors sharing their stories as he spent World War II in hiding with his mother and sister in the Polish countryside.
“It was about three and half years, what we did for the whole period of time. The conditions, of course, pretty, pretty harsh conditions, ” said Mark Schonwetter, Holocaust survivor.
His family was liberated by the soviet union when the war ended.
“It was unbelievable to believe and see that finally, finally we are alive and don’t have to be scared,” Schonwetter expressed.
“Look at the tattoos on their wrists and talk about what it was like in those camps,” said Jimmy Connors, Organizer.
Former Scranton Mayor Jimmy Connors helped host the 34 annual teen symposium on the Holocaust. A total of 13 school districts brought the classroom to the Hilton in Scranton, for students to hear firsthand, what unfolded in nazi Germany.
“Our people, to tell the story. This story is going to die if we don’t tell it,” Connors said.
The symposium on the Holocaust will continue Wednesday with another round of 650 students. In total, 30 school districts from Northeastern Pennsylvania and New York, will have listened to survivors and liberators.