Eva and Helen

Eva on Acting with Purpose, Respect, and Decency

This photo, from 2011, shows Eva Kor and Helen Rappaport on their visit to the Chicagoland Jewish High School. Both Eva and Helen were subjected to the twin experimentation by Dr. Josef Mengele in Auschwitz. Eva commented, “The tattoos are fading, but the memories never will.”

Eva transformed millions of lives around the world with her school visits, lectures, and Auschwitz trips. In another excerpt from Eva’s final speech, intended to be given at the ceremonies marking the 75thanniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, she calls us all to a common purpose for a future of healing and peace, while also addressing other survivors:

“There is nothing I can do to change my past, but I can change my future and hopefully that of others. Saying ‘NEVER AGAIN’ is not enough. We must act with definite purpose and a common goal for the sake of ourselves and others. It is up to us to actively teach today’s world, especially our youth, why respect and common decency for everyone, regardless of race, religion, or any other difference, is so important. And, until we use that education to begin to heal our own wounds on the most basic level and allow ourselves, the former prisoners, to be free of the pain of our tragic pasts, we will never be truly free. It is my opinion that by being free of the pain, survivors ensure their eternal peace and fortify their abilities to reach out and educate others with their memories.”