By Erin Hassanzadeh

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A survivor of the Holocaust is bringing her story to the Twin Cities this weekend. You may have never heard her name, but it’s likely you do know her stepsister, Anne Frank.

“We had a wonderful family life and suddenly really suddenly it was all destroyed when the Nazis marched into Austria,” said Eva Schloss, a Holocaust survivor.

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Schloss was 13 years old when her family went into hiding.

“In the end we were betrayed by a Dutch nurse who was a double agent,” said Schloss.

Now 90, she still remembers being transported in a crate and eventually was taken to Auschwitz.

“Eighty people were pushed in there and there were two buckets — one with water, one to use as toilets,” said Schloss. “Once a day they threw big chunks of bread in, like you would feed wild animals.”

“It lives with me all the time. All the time,” said Schloss.

Eva and her mother survived the camp.

“I never ever gave up hope but besides hope, you had to have luck,” said Schloss.

Her father and brother were not as lucky.

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Neither was her childhood friend, Anne Frank.

“When I met her, we were both 11 years old and like little girls we were just playmates,” said Schloss “I was much shyer than she. She was very outgoing. She liked to write stories.”

Eva and Anne never could have suspected that eventually they would become stepsisters.

Otto Frank, Anne’s father, married Eva’s mother after the liberation.

“He was very bad — miserable, until [he was given] the diary and that really helped him,” said Schloss.

Eva’s story is remarkable.

But she’s clear — she tells it for a reason.

“We said, ‘Never again, Auschwitz.’ We have learned our lesson,” said Schloss. “The Germans were not all for Hitler, but they were bystanders and that is what I tell people they shouldn’t be.”

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Schloss is speaking at the U of M on Sunday. People can find more information on the event and purchase tickets here.

Erin Hassanzadeh