Youth-led Holocaust documentary from Mobile at National WWII Museum

A documentary that was the product of the Springhill Avenue Federation of Temple Youth in Mobile will be screened at the National World War II Museum in New Orleans on July 14 at 6 p.m.

“We Remember: A Documentary” was developed by SHAFTY members Victoria Hirsch and Cory Garfinkle and describes the events of the Holocaust from the perspectives of a range of people living on the Gulf Coast.

The project began when Rickie Voit introduced Stan Zimmerman to Agnes Tennenbaum, a Holocaust survivor and author who had moved to Mobile in 2006. Tennenbaum is author of “A Girl Named Rose: My Holocaust Journey,” and has spoken extensively throughout the area about her experiences in Auschwitz.

The original idea was to preserve her story on film, and Springhill Avenue Rabbi Donald Kunstadt suggested the youth group get involved.

Zimmerman had been working with documentary producer Gary Scovil, who knew Hilmar von Campe, who had been a member of Hitler Youth and served in the German military. Von Campe, who died last summer, spoke out against totalitarianism and the ideologies he had been part of in his youth.

James Philpot, a local veteran who was among the first American troops to enter Dachau, was interviewed. In April, he was officially presented with a Bronze Star he was awarded in 1962 but had never received.

Hirsch’s grandmother gave the perspective of an American Jew who was living in those times. Von Campe’s sister, Sibylle von Campe Heidrich, and Springhill Avenue Temple member Roland Fry gave their perspectives, and the stories from the six participants were woven together for the film.

Hirsch and Garfinkle conducted the interviews. The film debuted in Mobile in November and has been screened in venues in the area since then. The students will introduce the film at the museum.