by Adam Grobman
Linda Schwab has been educating people about the Holocaust for a long time. Now, her words and experience will educate for decades to come.
Earlier this year, Linda published her book Displaced: A Holocaust Memoir and the Road to a New Beginning, with co-author Dr. Todd M. Mealy.
The book, which packs a powerful punch within its slim 127 pages, tells the story of Linda and her family’s experience of surviving during the Holocaust – and everything that happened after.
“My life is not just what I went through because of the Holocaust, but also new beginnings that came after,” Linda says. “The rest of my life is a story, too.”
The book was written over the course of two years. “Dr. Mealy would call me every Monday night, from 6-8pm, to talk,” she says.
Since publication, Linda has received the response that she hoped for: an increased interest in Holocaust education and support of causes that are important to her, like the Gesher L’Machar Fund, which she established with Lois Grass to assist students in attending the March of the Living program in Poland and Israel.
All of the royalties Linda receives are being donated to the fund.
“I went on the March of the Living with each of my grandchildren,” she says. “I want to make sure that people remember the Holocaust and what happened during it, and that can only happen by educating people.”
While this year’s March of the Living was postponed due to the COVID-19 crisis, Linda feels there are still many opportunities for Holocaust education.
Linda says that the main impetus to tell her story in this format was to educate children about the Holocaust, and that she hopes that the book will become a staple in school libraries.
“I can’t say no when it comes to educating children,” she says. “I go to the coal regions where the children have never seen a Jew, and I tell them ‘when there are no more survivors to tell the story, they’ll say this never happened. I want you to be my ambassadors.’”
Though we face uncertain times with the COVID-19 crisis, Linda never fails to have a powerful message rooted in education mixed with Jewish pride. “In the Haggadah at Passover, we read about the ten plagues,” she says. “I think of COVID-19 as number 11. This too shall pass, but we must obey the quarantines and be patient. Do a lot of praying to the one above.”