Sunday, February 23, 2014

The oldest known Holocaust survivor has died at the age of 110.

Alice Herz-Sommer was sent with her family to the Czech concentration camp of Terezin in 1943, where she became famous for trying to boost her fellow prisoners’ spirits through music. A film about her life has been nominated for “Best Short Documentary” at the Academy Awards next week.

"We all came to believe that she would just never die," said Frederic Bohbot, producer of the documentary 
"The Lady in Number 6: Music Saved My Life." ''There was no question in my mind, 'would she ever see the Oscars.'"

The film, directed by Oscar-winning filmmaker Malcolm Clarke, has been nominated for best short documentary at the Academy Awards next Sunday.

Herz-Sommer, her husband and her son were sent from Prague in 1943 to a concentration camp in the Czech city of Terezin - Theresienstadt in German - where inmates were allowed to stage concerts in which she frequently starred.

An estimated 140,000 Jews were sent to Terezin and 33,430 died there. About 88,000 were moved on to Auschwitz and other death camps, where most of them were killed. Herz-Sommer and her son, Stephan, were among fewer than 20,000 who were freed when the notorious camp was liberated by the Soviet army in May 1945.

She was hospitalized on Friday and passed away in London earlier today, according to her family.

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