King Welcomes Holocaust Survivor Peter Gorog

BRISTOL, Tenn., March 9, 2020 — It’s one thing to read about oppression, persecution, and imprisonment in a history book, where terms like “violent anti-Semitism” and “1940s Europe” can be considered at a distance, something assigned to an era that’s far removed from present-day life.

Sitting down with someone who survived those harsh realities, though, and hearing stories told in their own voice — that’s something else altogether.

As part of its annual Holocaust Remembrance, King’s Institute for Faith & Culture is proud to welcome Peter Gorog, an engineer who personally experienced the rise of Nazism in Hungary during the 1940s.

Gorog will speak on Monday, March 23, at 9:15 a.m. in King’s Memorial Chapel on the main campus in Bristol, and again at 7 p.m. at First Baptist Church, located at 1 Virginia Way in Bristol, Virginia. All events are open to the public and free of charge.

A native of Budapest, Gorog was born in 1941, a time when Jewish families were increasingly being torn apart by imprisonment, mandated housing in ghettoes, and conscription into forced labor battalions. Members of his family endured all these circumstances, as well as bitter cold, starvation, and hardships lasting beyond the 1945 liberation of Budapest, including malnourishment and continued discrimination.

An electrical engineer who contributed to the design of the first Hungarian computer, Gorog defected to the United States in 1980 and has since worked with NASA on several major satellite and orbital telescope projects, including GOES, LANDSAT, Hubble, and the James Webb Space Telescope.

“Many Holocaust survivors are now in their 80s and 90s, and the opportunity to take part in their story firsthand is becoming increasingly rare,” said Martin Dotterweich, Ph.D., director of the Institute. “We’re grateful to Peter for sharing his time with us and bringing this pivotal period in history to life with an immediacy that we would not otherwise experience.”

Gorog serves as a volunteer at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, and his visit to King is courtesy of the museum’s Office of Survivor Affairs.

For more information about the Institute, including the full schedule for the speaker series, visit king.edu/faithandculture.

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