As Holocaust survivors age and die, their stories must remain alive

Out of the 30 original Holocaust survivors who resettled in El Paso several decades ago, just a handful remains alive. As these survivors reach the end of their lives, many wonder how future generations will learn their stories and history.  

“Somebody asked me, ‘Tell me, is it true, that there was a concentration camp?’” said Holocaust survivor David Kaplan recently during an interview at the EL Paso Holocaust Museum and Study Center. Kaplan, about to turn 88, says he knows of only four remaining survivors still alive in El Paso.

“Young people now don’t know that there was such a thing,” Kaplan said, adding that it’s possible that in the future, “there will only be one or two lines about it in history.”  

The retired El Paso businessman, born in Lithuania, endured four years as a teenager in concentration camps in Lithuania and later at Dachau in Germany.