I Live in a Chickenhouse: no data

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AuthorHouse, Mar 31, 2005 - Art - 132 pages
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From the time when I was 8 to 11 years old, I hid from the Nazis in a chickenhouse with my parents and their friends, Heinz and Elli Graumann.  Since the personal experiences I recall are those of a preteen, I hope to connect well with children about that age.


I tell about my rescue from the Holocaust based on drawings I made as a child, helped by two talented amateur artists:  my father and his friend Heinz.  I use both my art and theirs to help explain what life was like for us at that time.  Each chapter of the book has one or more illustrations to help me put into words what I was thinking about at the time.


I describe how we ran away from our old apartment in Amsterdam because we had to hide from the Nazis, who wanted us Jews dead, or at least out of Europe.   We first moved from place to place and town to town because no one wanted us to hide with them for more than a few days.  We were fortunate that ultimately we were sheltered by Harry Janssen and his family, who gave us the chickenhouse to live in.


A visual presentation of Heppner''s tale of survival, suitable for all ages, is available in his DVD: "Rediscovering My Childhood--Memories of a Child Survivor." It runs for one hour and twenty minutes. Order copies by e-mailing Heppner at Maxamichai@comcast.net


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About the author (2005)

Heppner describes the first 11 years of his life, when he lived in the shadow of the Nazi Holocaust in Europe, as an ill defined fog, but to others his life seemed fairly normal.  He completed his education with a Master’s degree in journalism from the University of Wisconsin, and then worked mainly as a public affairs specialist for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, in and around Washington, DC. 

Since his retirement in 1994, he has prepared both documentary video and a book, “I Live in a Chickenhouse,” about his experiences as a hidden child.   He also lectures about the Holocaust and volunteers as coordinator for Mexico in Kulanu, Inc., a Jewish outreach organization, and serves as a mediator for the Baltimore City Community Mediation Program.

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