Holocaust Survivor, French Resistance Fighter to Speak at SOU

98-year-old Marthe Cohn, Holocaust survivor and French Jewish spy in Germany, will be speaking at the Southern Oregon University Music Recital Hall on Tuesday, Feb. 26.

Posted: Feb. 22, 2019 4:38 PM
Updated: Feb. 22, 2019 4:49 PM

ASHLAND, Ore. — A 98-year-old woman who survived the Holocaust as a French Jew spying in Germany will be visiting Ashland to share her experiences with the local community.

As a young woman, Marthe Cohn's family escaped Nazi-occupied France, but her sister would be caught and died in Auschwitz. Cohn was later recruited by the French Intelligence service "due to her blonde hair, blue eyes and thorough command of the German language."

Cohn posed as a German nurse searching for her "fiance" stationed on the front lines, all while gathering information on German troop movements to be delivered to the Allies.

"It is an honor for us to host a heroine the likes of Marthe Cohn and we are so fortunate that Marthe has agreed to come to Ashland to share her riveting story," said Rabbi Avi Zwiebel from the Chabad Jewish Center of Southern Oregon. "It is vital to bring awareness to the atrocities borne from hate and antisemitism, and how important tolerance and acceptance is. I encourage everyone who can, to come hear this remarkable woman tell her incredible story of courage, faith, and espionage."

At the age of 80, Cohn was awarded France's highest military honor — the Medaille Militaire, joining the likes of Winston Churchill and other heroes of WWII.

"The award officially acknowledged the heroic exploits of a beautiful young Jewish woman who faced death every day as she sought to help defeat the Nazi empire. At the time of the award, not even her children knew the extent of her service," said the event organizers.

The Chabad Jewish Center of Southern Oregon has partnered with Southern Oregon University (SOU) to host Cohn and share her story. The event is open to the public, but tickets may go fast.


BEHIND ENEMY LINES: The True Story of a Jewish Spy in Nazi Germany an evening with Mrs. Marthe Cohn

Tuesday, February 26 @ 7:00 p.m.

Southern Oregon University Music Recital Hall - 450 S Mountain Ave., Ashland

Adults: $15 / At door: $20 / Preferred Seating: $50 / VIP Seating: $100 / Sponsor: $360 (Includes 2 tickets, VIP seating, pre-event dinner with Marthe Cohn and a signed copy of Cohn's book "Behind Enemy Lines")

Due to limited space, advance ticket purchase is highly recommended and can be purchased at: www.chabadofashland.org/HolocaustSpeaker. Cohn will have copies of her book on sale and will be available for a book signing after the event.

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