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21
Aug
2019
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Renee Molho –Α bookstore in six chapters

The Jewish community of Thessaloniki was one of the Jewish communities in Europe that were completely destroyed during the Holocaust (94% of its members were murdered in Auschwitz-Birkenau). After the war only 1.950 Jews were counted in Thessaloniki. This lesson plan, which is based on Centropas’ film “Renee Molho –Α bookstore in six chapters“, provides the tools which students need to learn about this lost community and its people who participated in the historical events, people with specific names, jobs, lives and not simply anonymous victims.

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Michaela Vidlakova on vacation with her granddaughter

In this photograph I’m with my granddaughter. The photo is taken in 2002 in Greece on the island of Zakynthos.

Though raised in Jewish traditions, my son is a convinced atheist, and doesn’t distinguish between Jewish and non-Jewish friends. But his 16-year-old daughter, my granddaughter, is interested in things related to Judaism and the Holocaust. Daniel graduated from Czech Technical University; he works in his field and devotes himself exclusively to technology.

Charles Molho

This picture of Charles Molho, my father’s brother, was taken in Thessaloniki in the early 1920s.

My father, Raphael Molho, was the first of ten siblings.Out of the big family of my father’ss there were left only a sister, Bella, who lived in Israel, then still Palestine, a brother Charles, who lived in Brussels and survived Auschwitz, another brother Jacques who lived in Grenoble and also survived and two brothers living in Thessaloniki, Saoul and Alberto. That is four brothers in all. 

Bar mitzvah of Mike Capuano

This picture was taken on the day of my son Mike Capuano’s bar mitzvah in 1975, in our home in Athens.

My son received all the lessons necessary for his bar mitzvah. It was held on a Saturday and the rabbi didn’t give his consent to decorate the synagogue with flowers because, as he explained, the magnificence of the day is such that it cannot be beautified more with flowers.

Vetta Frances

This photo of Vetta Frances, my sister’s adoptive daughter, was taken in Thessaloniki in 1947.

The brother of my brother-in-law hadn’t gone to the mountain, but stayed in Thessaloniki and got married to an Italian girl called Vetta, who was pregnant. He would go somewhere and secretly, with his friends, would listen to the radio, from London, as the Germans had officially confiscated all the radios. Somebody betrayed them and they came in and arrested them all.

Yvonne Capuano-Molho and Charles Fix

This picture was taken on the ‘Remembrance Day of Greek Jewish Martyrs and Heroes of the Holocaust’ that took place on 27th January 2005, in Thessaloniki.

In 2005, I honored Mr. Fix. I had everything prepared already some fifteen or twenty years ago, but Mrs. Fix didn’t want me to, as she told me, ‘Mr. Fix is dead. Mr. Fix hid you, I had no involvement in it, whatever we did we did it for the best and I don’t want any thank you. For whatever we did let G-d thank us.’

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