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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California

Voices of Auschwitz

The USC Shoah Foundation screened a CNN documentary at Wallis Annenberg Hall featuring survivors of Auschwitz.


The 70-year anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland is January 27th, 2015.  The USC Shoah Foundation held a prescreening of a CNN documentary at Wallis Annenberg Hall this week that features survivors of Auschwitz and their emotional stories.

READ MORE ON NEON TOMMY: Shoah Foundation Hosts 'Auschwitz' Documentary Premiere

Renee Firestone and many other Jews still have vivid memories of the camp where millions of Jews were killed during World War II.  As a little girl, she says she watched when her mother was taken to a gas chamber.  Firestone was 21 years old when Auschwitz was liberated.

The Holocaust survivor says, "The chimneys burned all day long, the sky always red, fire red. I cannot think of anything else when I talk about Auschwitz but hell."  Firestone went from a life as an upper middle class Jew in Hungary, to a prisoner at Auschwitz, persecuted for her religion by the Nazis.

Now in her 90s, Firestone says the emotions she remembers from her time at the camp will never leave her.  She says, "this hopelessness, and this numbness, I cannot get over it. That bothers me more than anything else."

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