- Special Features
Blogs & Columns
- Fun & Games
Alice Herz-Sommer, the oldest-known survivor of the Holocaust, has passed away at the age of 110.
According to ABC News, Herz-Sommer passed away Sunday morning in a London hospital where she checked in on Friday. She was able to survive two years in a Nazi concentration camp in the Czech city of Terezin, because of her passion for music.
A documentary about her life, called "The Lady in Number Six: Music Saved my life," is nominated for an Academy Award, which are set to take place next month.
"We all came to believe that she would never die," said Frederic Bohbot, producer of the film. "There was no question in my mind 'would she ever see The Oscars.'"
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Herz-Sommer, an accomplished pianist, her husband and son were sent to the camp in 1943 from Prague. Of the estimated 140,000 Jews that were sent to the camp, an estimated 33,430 died there, and 88,000 were sent to Auschwitz and other death camps. Herz-Sommer and her son, Stephan, were among the 20,000 that were still alive when the death camp was liberated in May 1945 by the Soviets.
At the camp, inmates were often allowed to put on concerts. Despite the horrific conditions, Herz-Sommer remembered spending her time laughing.
"These concerts, the people are sitting there, old people, desolated and ill, and they came to the concerts and this music was for them our food. Music was our food. Through making music we were kept alive," she said of the concerts.