Survivor stuns class
Holocaust comes alive as students hear from Polish man who lived it
By Alice Mannette/staff

BUFFALO GAP — Tracey Mullins sat in the back of Buffalo Gap High School’s library, holding back tears as Holocaust survivor Mark Strauss spoke of murder, brutality and starvation. Eight years ago, she wept from the back of a classroom at Hilton High School in Woodbridge as she listened to Strauss. Back then she was a student. Now she’s a history teacher.

Mullins was so moved by Strauss, who lives near Winchester, that she kept up with his whereabouts.

“He made a pretty great impact on my life,” she said. “He spoke in my class when I was in 11th grade. I thought it was great that he could survive all that and still his paintings have color in them.”

Mullins wants students to live history, to feel what it’s like and not just see the written word in a textbook.