Holocaust survivor persevered

As he grew from a teenager to a young adult inside Nazi concentration camps, Joseph M. Matzner witnessed some of history’s worst atrocities.

“To be honest with you, sometimes I say to myself, when I tell the story, ‘Am I dreaming or is this reality?’ But it gets verified by other people,” he told the Globe in November 2003.

Spared from death, Mr. Matzner spent the next six decades embracing life. He loved food, adventure, lively political debates, and most of all people.

“You can use the word victim or survivor – he was definitely a survivor,” said his daughter, Karen Chinca of Brookline. “Through healing, he told his story and it was not all negative, negative. He was a true survivor. He had his tattoo removed because he wanted to go forward; he didn’t want anybody to pity him.”