Belfast Telegraph

'Hitler killed my mum and five brothers... we must never forget'

By Nevin Farrell

A Jewish woman living in Northern Ireland who lost five brothers and her mother in Hitler's Nazi death camps poignantly lit a special candle of remembrance at a ceremony on Holocaust Memorial Day.

Inge Radford (82) from Millisle, Co Down, escaped from Vienna to make a life in England and then Northern Ireland and says it is important that we never repeat such genocide.

Inge said: "It is an emotional day for me but we have to keep the memories. Five perished but me and the other four siblings got out.

"It is very important that this never happens again, but we never learned like in Rwanda and other places. But you have to keep on sending the message and sending it to the young," added Inge, who attended a Memorial Day event in Bangor last night.

She said: "I was the youngest of 10 and Hitler managed to get rid of five of us, but as they say, it is a game of two halves, he only got half, the rest of us went on to live happily ever after. We lost our mother as well, but Hitler didn't win altogether.

"There were six million the Fuhrer didn't think fit to live because he was a mad fanatic."

Inge left Vienna at the age of seven and worked as a social worker in Northern Ireland.

She lives in Millisle overlooking a former farm where a number of Jewish pre-World War Two refugees worked.

She moved there 35 years ago oblivious to its existence.

"We didn't know anything about it, it was a strange coincidence.

"Through the Kinder Transport a lot of children were rescued in places like the UK and were brought across Europe by nuns.

"I was given a home by people in England who felt that was the right thing to do and people like me lived with them until we got married," she added.

Yesterday 70 candles were lit at events across the UK to mark the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp.

Inge's daughter Dr Katy Radford, the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust's Northern Ireland representative, said: "Many in Northern Ireland have experienced trauma and loss and have much to learn from the Holocaust and subsequent genocides."

She said other atrocities like Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur were also remembered.

Michael Black, chairman of the Belfast Jewish Community, said: "It is very comforting that the world has taken this on board. Obviously it is an important event for us because many of us lost people in it.

"Most of the Jewish community here, their ancestors would have come here as refugees prior to the First World War and there are a few like my auntie who came with the Kinder Transport prior to World War Two."

Stormont junior ministers Jonathan Bell and Jennifer McCann attended a commemoration in Belfast Synagogue yesterday while hundreds attended a memorial event at Titanic Belfast last night.

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