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To Live is To Tell: Surviving the Shoah

To live is to tell – Surviving the Shoah

By David Benedikt


David Benedikt had a wonderful childhood in Czechoslovakia as a spoilt only child whose parents and childless aunt doted on him. He planned to become a doctor but his studies were cut short because of the antisemitic policies of the Nazi occupiers of his homeland in the lead up to WW2.

David’s charmed life was brought to an abrupt end after his family was unable to escape the Nazi whirlwind sweeping Europe and destroying Jewry in its path. He, together with his family, was deported to Theresienstadt. They were then sent further east where his parents perished. As a young man he was forced to endure three and a half years in two ghettos and three concentration camps.

Throughout his ordeal David maintained his humanity and has spent much of his life contemplating his fate and its meaning to his existence. He left Europe, never to return, for the safe haven of Australia and then South Africa, only to return to Australia later in his life. Since his retirement he has been a guide at the Sydney Jewish Museum where he educates new generations about the lessons to be gleaned from his inspiring story.

David Benedikt



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