Today we were honored to have an incredible man named Mitch Garwolski give a witness talk here at our home. Mitch is a Holocaust survivor who has written a book entitled Silent Screams of a Survivor: A Polish-American Boy’s Holocaust, which details his time spent as a young boy in Nazi occupied Poland during World War II. Mitch tells his personal story of the Holocaust for two reasons; first to witness to those that hear him that the Holocaust truly did happen, and secondly as a means of personal therapy.
Mitch shared with us his life as a 7 year old boy living in rural Poland when the Germans invaded. Both of Mitch’s parents, his sister, his grandparents, and other relatives died in concentration camps at the hands of the Nazis. He too was a prisoner at a concentration camp, but escaped when the Russians liberated Poland. Mitch recounted terrible atrocities that he witnessed done to the Polish people by German Nazis during the War. He also shared that his instinct to survive carried him through these terrible times and somehow he escaped and made it to America. He said that he did not speak of these experiences until 2004, when he could no longer remain silent and wrote his book and began giving talks about his own personal holocaust.
We were fortunate to have one of our loyal volunteers here at the home, Bill Lindeman, bring Mitch to us and introduce him to the audience. Bill Lindeman shared that even though he had known Mitch for the last 25 years, it was not until about 10 years ago that he found out he was a Holocaust survivor. The Sisters, Residents, and guests were incredibly moved by Mitch’s talk.