About My Jewish Legacy
There are so many stories from the Holocaust that are still untold. My Jewish Legacy is a place to preserve these stories with people from all across the globe. Whether the story is a tale of survival, courage, love, pride, loss or happiness, we want to hear from you.
My Jewish Legacy is an opportunity to share these memories with the world, including stories of Jewish Pride, Righteous Gentiles, and World War II Heroism. If you know of an untold story, we encourage you to take a minute to document and submit it for preservation. All of our lives are influenced by the lives that came before us. You will be enriched if you simply take the time to listen to the stories and then take the extra step to preserve them.
What started as a Bat Mitzvah project has grown into a passion. To honor her grandfather, Elyse Bodenheimer founded My Jewish Legacy when she was 12-years old, as a starting place for kids and teens to share stories about their grandparents’ journeys escaping or surviving the holocaust. Elyse wanted to know more about what it was like to grow up during the holocaust, and also document what happened to her own family. Her grandparent’s stories are under the section “About Elyse > Family Stories”.
Over the years, Elyse has become an active speaker and community advocate for continuing Holocaust Education, preservation of the history of the “greatest generation”, and the Holocaust’s impact on teens. In addition to numerous presentations to classes at local Charlotte middle and high schools, Elyse has spoken to the NCCAT UNC Chapel Hill; at the Kiwanis Club; at Churches and Temples; and at the ImaginOn Theater. She is an author of poetry and a children’s book.
Elyse says that “learning about my grandparents who escaped the holocaust made me feel proud to be a Jew. I am hoping that this project will keep those memories alive”. Her hope is that other teens will ask their grandparents or family friends about what they remember and then write a story about what they heard; and submit them to this website.
Elyse Bodenheimer will graduate from Providence High School in Charlotte, North Carolina in June 2014, and plans to eventually become a prosecutor in the District Attorney’s office. She is an intern with a District Court Judge, is active in The Freedom School for underprivileged children, runs Varsity track and is on the swim team. In the Fall of 2014, she will be attending the University of South Carolina in Columbia.