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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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A brown wooden boxcar could be seen Monday afternoon on the Texas A&M campus. This boxcar, however, was not on the train tracks on Wellborn Road, and it did not carry cargo. This car carried students and history.
Students walked through the boxcar, which was set up in the Memorial Student Center, and read information about World War II and the Holocaust. The event was co-sponsored by the Hillel Foundation, a Jewish student organization, and six other organizations as a part of Holocaust Remembrance Day.
In addition to the boxcar informational, volunteers stood at Rudder Fountain and read the names of Holocaust victims from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. This memorial, which has taken place on campus for the past six years, is also observed at other universities nationwide.
Approximately 6 million Jews were killed in the Holocaust, which took place in World War II between 1933 and 1945. Other minority groups were targeted as well, including gays, communists and gypsies.
Not all of the Holocaust victims’ names were read because of the list’s length, said Bryan Hajovsky, a senior wildlife and fisheries science major and one of the students who read at the MSC. It takes three years to cycle through the entire list, he said.
Reading through victims’ names is an effective way to remember the individuals, Hajovsky said.
“It calls to mind people’s hardships and the destruction of war, but we must overcome it, and we can do this by bringing back their dignity as people,” Hajovsky said.
The memorial is important because it reminds students of the lives that were lost, not just the event itself, said Lena Wise, a junior biomedical science major and president of the Hillel Foundation.
“If they’re not remembered, then the stories die,” she said. “People tend to relate more to an actual person than to just history, so if people don’t relate to the Holocaust on a personal level, it could happen again.”
Clifton Marstaller, a senior sports management major, said there could be more effective ways to remember victims than by simply reading their names, such as setting up a display with victims’ names written on it.
“As a passerby, unless you know it’s Holocaust day, there’s no way you’d know that’s what they’re reading,” Marstaller said. “That could be a list of students from Texas A&M University.”
Miguel Escobar said he had not seen anything like the display before on campus.
“It’s something that we don’t want to happen to any race,” said Escobar, a junior biology major. “How horrible it would feel to be in their position. I would want people to know what happened. Not just for me, but for everyone who was in the Holocaust.”

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