If you read the story about Holocaust survivor Renee Hecht Tully in the Mormon Times last year, you may be interested to view portions of a recently published interview with this remarkable lady. Mrs. Tully clearly recounts her expulsion with other Jewish schoolchildren from public schooling, her apprehension by a Nazi bounty hunter, the reunion with her mother and their survival in the concentration camp at Auschwitz, and their eventual liberation and repatriation to France.
The interview was produced by Mike Berry, a teacher at Bella Vista High School in Fair Oaks, Calif. and is posted at Vimeo.com.
Now a resident of California, Tully spends time every year sharing her story at local middle and high schools. She teaches students the lessons learned from her mother that “things will get better. If you survive, regardless, living or trouble — whatever, you are going to have something better after that.” She says the children listen spellbound and that the teachers like the presentation because she doesn’t act like she has been hurt or resentful. She tells them that miserable things do not have to destroy you. “My attitude is we all have to go through trials in life,” she said. “Some of them are small. Some of them are big. I was in a big trial, but I was lucky to have survived it. So I’m taking the good part out of it, I survived and learned tremendous lessons in life — a lesson that regardless of what happens to you, you can make it.”
Interviewer Mike Berry says: “Renee Tully still has crystal clear memories of her time in the Auschwitz concentration camp in Nazi Germany. Her commentary is nothing short of amazing and should make you think of current conditions around the world. From her recipe for soup made at the camp to the family she went half way around the world to meet, Renee is still loving life today, with a sharp sense of humor, and blames no one. ‘So…that’s life.’”
Renee Tully, pictured above with President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints following her husband’s death in 1982.
The video can be viewed at MormonTimes.com, where a series of bookmarks allow you to jump easily from one part of the 30-minute interview to another.