“Never again, never again,” 96-year-old Holocaust survivor vows to fight anti-Semitism
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) - “Never again, never again” were the words uttered by a 96-year-old Holocaust survivor who lived through the reign of Nazi Germany in his teenage years. Saul Dreier told his story to nearly a hundred students at the University of Florida on Yom HaShoah, also known as Holocaust Remembrance Day. He is sharing his story through music.
“Never again, never again, never again,” exclaimed Dreier.
The 96-year-old believes it is essential to teach people about the pain suffered in the past to ensure it does not happen again.
“I’ve got a logo, and I say wherever I go, wherever I play, never again, never again, never again,” explained Dreier. “We want to make sure that we educate this youth.”
He said many of his family members died in the Holocaust. However, he was able to break free of the Nazi regime.
“In 1945, I was liberated. I was five years in Italy in a displaced persons camp. I recuperated. I had an uncle who found me,” explained Dreier. “In 1945, I came to the United States. It was Yom Kippur day.”
That is one of the holiest days in the Jewish religion. The six candles lit by the survivor at the UF remembrance ceremony represent the six million Jewish people that died in the Holocaust. UF student Romy Miller thinks having Dreier on campus is an amazing opportunity.
“He is an incredible human being,” explained Miller. “Being able to have him on our campus and being able to expose other UF students to the Holocaust and remembrance of it is an amazing opportunity. It just helps us to never forget and educate.”
Mikaela Mesch, another UF student, is honored to have Dreier on campus.
“With the anti-Semitism that we experience around our own community, I learned so many things from Saul in ways to combat that. I think this was an incredible experience,” said Mesch.
Dreier is on a mission for the rest of his life.
“I promise, my friends. I promise my orchestra, my band, that until I’m going to die, I’m going to combat anti-Semitism. I’m doing it, I’m doing it with music,” explained the 96-year-old survivor.
As lights continue to shine in honor of the lives lost in the Holocaust on Yom HaShoah, Dreier will continue using his story to inspire others to fight hate.
To find out more information about the University of Florida Hillel, click here.
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