Auschwitz Survivor Speaks at PUC

By Michelle Konn on June 13, 2007

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Edith Eva Eger, a survivor of the Auschwitz death camp in Nazi Germany, will speak about "The Celebration of Life" on Friday, Oct. 25, at 8 p.m. in Pacific Union College's church sanctuary. Admission is free.

A 68-year-old clinical psychologist from La Jolla, Calif., Eger uses her past experiences to share a message of healing and personal growth. "People must acknowledge not what happens with us, but what we do with that. You can turn tragedy into victory," she says.

Living amidst torture, cannibalism, and death in Auschwitz, 16-year-old Eger learned how to turn her suffering into survival. The same day she was separated from her parents, who were executed in the gas chambers, Eger was forced to dance for the infamous Nazi officer, Dr. Josef Mengele.

Eger was routinely starved, beaten, and humiliated until her camp was liberated. Her nine-month ordeal ended on May 4, 1945, when her emaciated, 40-pound body was pulled out of a pile of corpses by an American soldier who saw Eger's hand move. She considers it a miracle that she was spared.

Today, Eger is a sought-after clinical psychologist and lecturer, helping individuals and organizations overcome their limitations, discover their powers of self-renewal, and move beyond mere survival.