Author and Survivor Reflects on 70th Anniversary of Auschwitz

For Bernard Otterman It Will Be A Day of Both Mourning and Affirmation

Old Westbury, NY (PRWEB) January 5, 2015 January 27, 2015 will be the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, the German Nazi concentration camp. It has also been designated by the UN as International Holocaust Remembrance Day. Events commemorating the anniversary will be held at Auschwitz and around the world. More information on the events can be found at and remembrance-day

Bernard Otterman is the author of ‘Inmate 1818 and Other Stories’ (Paperback and eBook editions, Fiction, Liber Novus Press, November 2014) fictional short stories based on his own experiences as a child in labor camps during World War II. For Mr. Otterman the commemoration will be a day of mourning but also affirmation that the Holocaust, and the stories of the lost and the survivors, will not be forgotten. His stories are fictional but the events and places are real. One of the stories, “The Golem of Auschwitz” is particularly fitting reading for a Day of Remembrance on the 70th anniversary date of the liberation of the camp.

Mr. Otterman was just a child at the time World War II broke out and events that were beyond understanding to most of the world at the time were certainly incomprehensible to the young boy. But for years now, Old Westbury, NY resident Mr. Otterman, now 77 years old, has been struggling to tell his story, to understand, to share, to commemorate, and to contribute to the literature of the Holocaust, through writing and publishing his own fiction and poetry on the subject.

"Otterman's willingness to engage creatively with the metaphysical questions raised by the Holocaust should be applauded." - Marissa Brostoff, The Jewish Daily Forward

"Polish born writer Bernard Otterman portrays the textured worlds of pre, during and post World War II. These are stories of inherent drama, yet there is no exploitation of events here. Often understated, frequently macabre, and somehow wry."
Martha Rhodes, Founding Editor and Director of Four Way Books

Here is historical fiction at its finest, concise and penetrating, Otterman's vivid tales of life during and after history's darkest hour explore complex issues such as complicity, denial, and shame with sensitivity and skill."Joshua M. Greene, author of Justice at Dachau and Witness: Voices from the Holocaust

"A tour de force from a marvelous writer who himself survived the wrath of the Nazis." Harvey Rachlin, author of Lucy's Bones, Sacred Stones and Einstein's Brain

“Holocaust survivor, Bernard Otterman, locates some of his stories in the ghettos and the camps, others in the aftermath of WWII. This double narrative perspective greatly enriches his collection, whose stories are often chilling but always powerful and imaginative. Readers will be captivated by characters they will never forget.” - Patrick Gerard Henry, author of We Only Know Men: The Rescue of Jews in France during the Holocaust

Bernard Otterman was born in Lodz, Poland, in 1937. At the age of three, he and his parents escaped Lodz and fled to Warsaw. From there to the Pietrokov ghetto and were subsequently interned in the Radom ghetto and then transferred to the Daimler work camp five miles away producing small munitions. In June of 1944, as the Russians advanced from the east, the camp was liquidated, and its inmates shipped to Auschwitz. Bernard and his mother escaped from the line being marched to the trains, fled and hid for six months as fugitives in the Polish countryside and survived until the Russian troops liberated Poland in January of 1945. His father was sent by train to Auschwitz, then immediately moved to a work camp in Germany. He too survived and the family was reunited in Lodz in September of 1945 through displaced persons listings. They lived in Germany until coming to the United States in 1951. Otterman was trained in mechanical engineering and for many years was on the engineering faculty at Northeastern and Hofstra universities. He worked and reworked the stories in this collection for more than a decade. "The Golem of Auschwitz" was first published in New Millennium Writings. "Kaddish" was first published in The Nassau Review and received first prize in fiction from the Review. "Lotto Fever" was first published in Word/Slovo. Several of Mr. Otterman's poems have been published in Poetry, Jewish Currents and other journals and compendia. His website is: