Holocaust survivor Eva Kor to be honored with Indiana mural

October 17, 2020 GMT

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Holocaust survivor and forgiveness advocate Eva Mozes Kor who died last year at the age of 85 will be honored with a mural in Indianapolis.

The 53-foot-tall portrait of Kor is expected to be completed by the end of November, the Indianapolis Star reported. It will be painted on the side of the 500 Festival Building in the city’s downtown. Kor will take her place alongside other local legends, including Reggie Miller, Kurt Vonnegut and Mari Evans, who also have murals in the city.


“She stood 4’9” in real life,” said Ted Green, a documentary filmmaker who followed Kor for years and helped commission the mural, “but she was a giant.”

Earlier this month, Kor’s son, Alex, alongside artist Pamela Bliss, painted the first strokes of what will be an image of Kor, smiling and flashing a peace sign, with her signature message, “hope, healing, and forgiveness.”

“This is my effort, along with so many other people, to kind of extend my mom’s legacy,” her son said. “Quite frankly, with the social unrest we’ve had here in the United States, particularly in downtown Indianapolis, I hope my mom’s mural is a beacon of light.”

Kor was born in 1934 to a Jewish family in Romania, which later fell under German military occupation in World War II. In 1944, Kor and her family were deported to Auschwitz where her parents and two older sisters were killed in a gas chamber. Kor and her twin sister, Miriam, were experimented on and tortured by the Nazi “Angel of Death” Dr. Josef Mengele, who she forgave years later.

John Abrams, a friend of Kor who also helped commission the mural, said she spread her message like a “pied piper” to young people. “For them to learn that there’s hope and that you can heal, and that you can forgive, is a life message that is very important.”

In 1984, Kor and her twin started a nonprofit called Candles (Children of Auschwitz Nazi Deadly Lab Experiments Survivors). That following year, she opened the Candles Holocaust Museum and Education Center in Terre Haute and publicly forgave the Nazis in Auschwitz on the 50th anniversary of the liberation.

“Eva has left an everlasting impact on Hoosiers, our country and our world,” Gov. Eric Holcomb said. “This mural will be an enduring reminder of her spirit of forgiveness and love.”