Arye Ephrath, a childhood survivor of the Holocaust, to speak at Radford University World War II anniversary series


The Radford University Department of History is continuing its series of lectures commemorating the 75th anniversary of the ending of World War II.

On March 24, Arye R. Ephrath will present “Amazing Grace: My Holocaust Story,” sharing his experiences of surviving the Holocaust as a young child in Czechoslovakia (present-day Slovakia) and growing up during World War II and after.

Ephrath was separated from his parents as a young boy and hidden in an orphanage for protection from the Nazis. He was reunited with them on his third birthday when the Soviet Army liberated Czechoslovakia. Years later, after moving to Israel and completing military service there, Ephrath studied aerospace engineering and became a professor of engineering. He also has served as a volunteer United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C.

Ephrath will share his story at 4 p.m. in the iLab Research Center, McConnell Library 271. Limited seating is available for Radford University students, faculty and staff. Pre-registration is required and can be completed on the Department of History website. A Zoom link is also provided on the department’s website for those who wish to watch the presentation online.

The World War II series will continue March 31 when Radford University alumnus Adam Bennett ’11 speaks about the impact World War II had on the New River Valley. Bennett’s presentation, “Powder, People and Politics: the Radford Ordnance Works and the New River Valley,” begins at 4 p.m. Bennett, who graduated with honors from Radford University, is a teacher at Benjamin Franklin Middle School in Franklin County, Virginia.

“The World War II 75th Anniversary Series: Experience and Legacy” aims to commemorate the lives of those who fought for freedom in World War II. It is sponsored and organized by the College of Humanities and Behavioral Sciences (CHBS), McConnell Library and the Department of History.

Series presentations began in February 2020 and have featured a plethora of topics that include song in the Soviet Union during World War II, women in the roles of nurses on the battlefield, an archaeological and geophysical expedition to Guadalcanal and how baseball kept playing in America throughout the war. Recordings of each presentation can be found on the Department of History website.

To learn more about the series, contact professor of history Suzanne Ament, Ph.D., ( or professor of history Matthew Oyos, Ph.D. ( at 540-831-5147.

Mar 23, 2021
Chad Osborne