Remembering Annemarie Warschauer

Posted by Brittany Garzillo on

As a journalist, I feel an honor and privilege to share stories of people who have endured life-changing experiences. In the case of Holocaust survivor Annemarie Warschauer, her story changed mine.

In April of 2014, I had the opportunity to meet the 93-year-old Allentown woman who wanted to publicly share her story of survival for the first time. A profoundly strong, independent and brave woman, Annemarie spoke with courage, recalling the horrors of the Holocaust that she and millions of others suffered decades ago.

Annemarie was a teenager living in Germany when Hitler came to power in 1933. In her memoir, she recounts every detail, from when Nazis seized and killed her father, to her escape from Nazi Germany to Shanghai, China and, eventually, Allentown, Pennsylvania.

At age 93, Annemarie was a vibrant and optimistic woman with a harrowing story of survival to tell. Later that year, Annemarie’s story, which also included interviews from her daughter, Fay Schwartz, and son, Gary Werner, received an Emmy® Award nomination from the Mid-Atlantic Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (NATAS).

“My mother is a huge inspiration I would say, to anybody and everybody,” said Werner during his interview in April of 2014.

She was an inspiration to me. After her story aired, I remained in contact with Annemarie. We would occasionally speak on the phone and she even attended PBS39’s FOCUS Season 2 premiere party as one of my guests.

Annemarie passed away in May. While she is no longer here to share her firsthand accounts, her family has donated documents of their family history to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C. so that her story is never forgotten.

“If you could learn anything from my mother, I think it would be that the world should live in peace and love each other,” Werner said. “And there should not be any prejudice with anybody, for any reason.”

PBS39 has archived Annemarie’s full interview for perpetuity. View her story below.

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