Ida Kersz Visits Montana Dec. 9-12, 2023

December 9-12, 2023

Between December 5-7, 2008 Danny Spungen—representing the Florence and Laurence Spungen Family Foundation—first exhibited at Billings West High School, Congregation Beth Aaron, and a giant gymnasium in Billings, Montana. Fast forward to July 2012 when Billings West teacher Rob Stanton recognized Danny in Krakow, Poland on a CANDLES Holocaust Museum trip.  Our Foundation instantly recognized how amazing Rob was and from that day on we have partnered with high school students and teachers in Montana in an effort to promote and encourage Holocaust education.


Beginning in 2013, each year the Foundation has given seven to ten scholarships to students, from Billings West for educational trips to Poland, which include an opportunity to visit Auschwitz with Holocaust survivor, Eva Kor (Founder of CANDLES in Terre Haute, IN). This trip signifies the culmination of the students’ semester long class on genocide, taught by Rob.


Beginning in the spring of 2017, Billings students unable to go to Poland used their spring break time to come to Illinois for an in-depth “Survivors Week.” The focus of the week centers around Holocaust survivors joining the students for meals at the Spungen home and sharing their stories in much greater depth and time than their typical school schedule would allow. When available, other influential speakers in the field of genocide studies have spoken as well. Additional activities in the past have included visits to CANDLES, the Illinois Holocaust Museum, Baha’i Temple in Evanston, IL, and to Milwaukee zip code “53206” – the largest number of incarcerated men in prison per capita.


This Montana tradition expanded when Rob helped teacher John Tooke establish a Holocaust & Genocide course at Custer County District High School (CCDHS) in Miles City.


Students are now planning their CANDLES Poland trip in June 13-24, 2024. Eva Kor passed away in 2019, but students are so fortunate to have survivor Ida Paluch Kersz escort them next year.


To help raise funds and support the students before their trip, Ida is traveling to Montana to meet you! We will have her book, Unveiled Memories: Twins Reunited After the Holocaust, for $15 + and any additional donation you would like to make that will 100% go to the students to help fund their extremely important educational trip to Poland.

Date: December 9, 2023

Address: Billings and Miles City, Montana

Event Category: Events

Administrative Contact:
Carol Spungen

Holocaust Postal Collection::
Daniel Spungen: