Genia Spitzer, a Holocaust survivor who promoted tolerance, died Wednesday, April 30, 2008 in Tucson.

A strong, devoted matriarch born in Poland in 1927, Genia was 12 when the Nazis separated her from her family. She was imprisoned in Gabersdorf, a forced labor camp on the German-Czech border.

She returned at war’s end to find her mother and sister the only surviving members of her large, extended family.

In 1946, she met and married William Spitzer, another Holocaust survivor. Together they made their way to America.

A humanitarian activist who embraced diversity and acceptance, Genia was preceded in death by her husband William, the founder and former Chairman of the Jewish Holocaust Survivor’s of Arizona. They cared deeply about educating Tucson’s youth on Holocaust issues and she leaves a strong and enduring legacy of Holocaust education in the community.

She is survived by one son Lee, 2 daughters, Perri Chasin and Hannah (Jack) Breschard of California, 4 grandchildren (Michael Gross, Cynthia Spencer, Max and Alex Breschard) and 2 great-grandsons (Cody and Caleb Gross).