On Thursday, May 19, 36 students taking World Cultures with Ms. Ellen Downer visited the National Museum of the United States Air Force to attend Prejudice & Memory: A Holocaust Exhibit.
Holocaust survivor Mrs. Renate Frydman, who escaped Germany with her family when she was a year old, spoke to the students. She shared early memories of being in a train station, aware of the fact that they were not on a holiday, and told students the story of her late husband who hid in the Polish forest to save his own life during the war. Mrs. Frydman impressed upon the students that many people lost their entire families in the Holocaust, and warned them to avoid bullying and other forms of prejudice made easier today with technology.
Students were guided through the Holocaust exhibit at the museum in small groups. Many of the artifacts in the exhibit have been contributed by survivors and families of survivors who live in the Dayton area. Both classes also had time to stop and see other historical artifacts including a piece of the Berlin Wall and the B-29 bomber Bockscar—the plane that dropped the bomb on Nagasaki to end the war with Japan.
For many students it was a return trip to the museum yet for others it was a first, but everyone wanted to go back to spend more time exploring the displays.
By Ms. Ellen Downer, social studies teacher and department chair