On Wednesday, May 28th, the Grade 6 classes had the privilege to hear a special guest speaker. Marie Doduck, co-founder of the Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre, shared her enthralling and harrowing story of surviving the Holocaust as a child, and immigrating to Canada in 1947 as a 12 year-old orphan.
Marie, then known as Mariette, was the youngest of 11 children. She and seven of her siblings survived the war. Her mother and her brother Albert were murdered in Auschwitz, her brother Jean was hanged by the Gestapo, and her brother Simon, who was in a concentration camp, died three weeks after the war due to not being able to digest the food given to him by American and Canadian soldiers.
Marie survived by hiding and moving from country to country with the aid of her brother Jean, who was member of the French Resistance. She lived with non-jewish families, in a convent and in orphanages. Marie recounted memories of witnessing death for the very first time, hiding in a storm cellar, and in a bale of hay in a barn. She still bears a scar on her hand where a Nazi soldier stuck a pitch fork. She also assisted the French Resistance by passing on messages when she was moved from place to place.
Read more about Marie Doduck’s remarkable story of survival by clicking on the links below the video.
The Jewish Independent:
The Jewish Museum and Archives of BC: