75th Anniversary of the Liberation of Auschwitz marked with a memorial at Barrie City Hall

More than 50 people gathered for a solemn commemoration in the rotunda at Barrie City Hall this afternoon to mark International Holocaust Remembrance Day and the 75th Anniversary of the Liberation of Auschwitz.

The event was organized by Barrie Pride.

75th Anniversary of the Liberation of Auschwitz Memorial at Barrie City Hall
L to R: Jeff Lehman, Mayor of Barrie, Jessie Lawson, Chief Operating Officer Barrie Pride, David Bradbury, Executive Director Barrie Pride, David Shron, President of Al Shalom Congregation

David Shron, President of Am Shalom Congregation, says he was honoured to be invited in order to express what this day meant to Jews but also to talk about how it was not only about Jews.

“It was about anybody was considered undesirable at that time.”

Shron says he never had the opportunity before to talk about the anniversary to a group other than to his own synagogue.

“To be here to talk to people who were also touched by the Holocaust because of intolerance and because of discrimination, to be able to join together with them and hope this event never happens again.”

He says we never want to see someone discriminated against for who they are and for what they are.

For Shron, the Holocaust was about hate and persecution.

“This wasn’t just about anti-Semitism. There were six million Jews who died during the Holocaust,” says Shron. “But there were 11 million people who died. So five million other people of other descriptions were persecuted along with the Jews.”

Shron says he really appreciated Barrie Pride inviting him to be part of this memorial.

“It is something long overdue. We stand together and say that it is enough. We don’t want to see it happen again.”