First, a disclosure: This is self-promotion. The blog often falls into this category.
Here it is: I have written a book, and it is now in published form. If you want to order it, I will provide the links below.
It is available through the self-publishing company, CreateSpace, and -- as of this weekend -- it is listed on Amazon.
The title is in the headline on this post. It is the story of my parents and their lives before and after they were Holocaust survivors.
Survivors: 62511, 70726 -- the numbers the Nazis tattooed on their left forearms.
It is Rose and Louis Van Thyn's stories, but also my sister Elsa and mine -- our journey from Amsterdam to the United States.
If you have followed this blog for more than 4 1/2 years, you have seen much of the material in the book. But it has been a while since the early chapters, and you might not have seen many of the photos in the book.
Doing this has been a labor of love -- and several people encouraged me to do it -- and it also has been a labor.
Trying to do it on my own two years ago, I failed miserably because I am not that technical savvy. It was driving me more nuts than I already am -- you can laugh at that -- and it also was driving someone who lives with me a little battier than she already is.
So I dropped the idea. But as I kept writing about my parents' stories on this blog, people kept telling me I should put it together in a book.
There are a couple of heroes responsible for it finally happening. Tom Johanningmeier, deputy sports editor of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram (my journalism home for a final decade of work), formatted the whole thing, really put it together. Janet Glaspie, who lived down the street from my parents in Shreveport for years and helped care for them, proofread the pages and made many good suggestions and necessary fixes.
Without them, I am not a published author.
I never had great desire to write a book, but -- as I state in the introduction to the book -- I wanted my parents' stories in one place for their many friends and mostly for our family, for the generations.
And here's what else; it can't be said enough: The Holocaust was real, and the threat of oppression and genocide remains ever-present. There are people out there who deny the Holocaust, who excuse what happened, who say it is fictional history.
They are so wrong, wrong, wrong. Often loud wrong.
I knew two people who lived through it, and who told their stories. And I've retold those stories.
To order the book (the list price is $15, plus shipping charges):
https://www.createspace.com/6486186 (this is the preferable option, although you might have to create a free CreateSpace account to place an order)
Kindle: (price $2.99, no photos) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MF8CYKV