Tu B'Shvat in Theresienstadt





Irma Kohn Lauscher was a teacher at a Jewish school in Prague. On December 22, 1942, she and her husband Jiri and their little daughter, Michaela, were deported to Theresienstadt.

In Theresienstadt, Irma was a dedicated teacher in the clandestine classes that were organized for the children. Her classes included lessons on Jewish tradition and holidays. At times she would trade her bread for pencils and paper.

In January 1943, Irma managed to persuade a camp guard to bring her a tree sapling for the children to plant in celebration of the holiday of Tu B’Shvat. They planted the tree, and the children nurtured it, group after group. They called the tree Etz Hayim — the Tree of Life.

Today a sapling from the Etz Hayim tree has been replanted at Yad Vashem.

*Irma and her family survived the war. Of the approximately 15,000 jewish children who entered Theresienstadt, only some 100 children survived.






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