Holocaust survivor recounts leaving her family when she was a teen

On this Yom HaShoah, or Holocaust Remembrance Day, 98-year-old survivor Anita Weisbord recounted the painful decision her mother made to send Anita at age 16 by herself to England. 

"My aunt called my mother a rotten mother. 'How can you send your children away, how can you do that?'" Anita said. "They decided to take an unspecified number of children, they had to be under 17 years of age and come alone." 

She was one of 10,000 children saved by the Kindertransport, which was a U.K.-led effort to rescue Jewish children in Europe while Hitler was rising to power.

"I truly believe my mother gave birth to me twice: when I was born and when she had the strength and the foresight to send me on the kindertransport to England," Anita said.

She spoke to us at the Holocaust Memorial and Tolerance Center in Glen Cove. The museum, which also pays tribute to other genocides around the world, hosted a virtual Yom HaShoah commemoration in honor of this significant day.

"It specifically remembers the Warsaw Ghetto uprising in 1943 but it really is a symbolic day to remember the murder of the 6 million men, women, and children who were murdered during the Holocaust simply for being Jewish," said Helen Turner, the museum's director of education.

Anita's remarkable story has a happy ending. Her father survived Dachau concentration camp, her mother survived in hiding, and her two older siblings also lived to tell their stories.

Anita tells her story to show where hate can lead to.

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