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Holocaust Survivor Susan Warsinger to Speak at King University Feb. 26

BRISTOL, Tenn., Feb. 12, 2018 – Holocaust survivor Susan Warsinger will share her story on Monday, Feb. 26 at King University’s Memorial Chapel in Bristol, Tenn., at 9:15 a.m., and again that evening at 7 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church located adjacent to campus. The events are co-sponsored by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. The Faith and Culture 2017-2018 series is co-sponsored by the Bristol Herald Courier.

Susan Warsinger is a Holocaust survivor who often lectures about her family’s efforts to escape from the Nazis and war-torn Europe during the 1930s. She spent 27 years as a teacher, helping to educate middle and high school students about the Holocaust.

“It is a great honor to hear from survivors, like Warsinger, of the Holocaust each year as we partner with the Holocaust Museum,” said Martin Dotterweich, Ph.D., associate professor of History at King. “For 10 years now, our students and the wider community have heard stories of courage and resolve in the face of unspeakable evil. Each year, these survivors’ stories serve both as a warning for the future and a bracing call to fight for human dignity. We are delighted that so many in our region have supported this part of our series, and have overflow seating arranged.”

Born in 1929, Warsinger was one of three children and the daughter of a linen store owner in Bad Kreuznach, a city in western Germany with a Jewish community that dated back to the 13th century. On Nov. 9 and 10, 1938, Warsinger and her family witnessed a wave of violence sweep through their town, throughout Germany, into annexed Austria, and areas of the Sudetenland in Czechoslovakia. The event became known as Kristallnacht or the “Night of Broken Glass.” More than 267 synagogues were destroyed, windows were shattered, and stock looted in an estimated 7,500 Jewish-owned establishments. Jewish cemeteries became a particular object of desecration.

Warsinger’s parents smuggled both her and her younger brother, Joseph, into France after Kristallnacht. However, just two years later, France was also overtaken by the Germans, and the children were moved from Paris to Versailles, where they were temporarily housed in Louis XIV’s palace. Eventually, Susan and Joseph made their way across Spain and Portugal before finally immigrating to the United States in Sept. 1941 with the help of the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society. Susan and Joseph were reunited with their parents and younger brother; the family then settled in Washington D.C.

Today, at age 88, Susan Warsinger is a volunteer tour guide for the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C.


King University is a Presbyterian-affiliated, doctoral-level comprehensive university. Founded in 1867 as King College, the University offers more than 90 majors, minors, pre-professional degrees and concentrations in fields such as business, nursing, law, medical and health sciences, pharmacy, education, and humanities. Graduate programs are offered in business administration, education, and nursing. A number of research, off-campus learning opportunities, and travel destinations are also available. King University is a NCAA Division II and a Conference Carolinas member with 25 varsity sports. For more information about King University, visit King University does not discriminate against academically qualified students of any race, color, national or ethnic origin, sex, age, or disability. King University is certified by SCHEV to operate locations in Virginia. For more information on SCHEV certification, contact the King University office at Southwest Virginia Community College, 309 College Road, Richlands, VA 24641.