Nico Van Thyn to deliver annual Van Thyn Memorial lecture at Centenary

SHREVEPORT, LA —Nico Van Thyn, son of Holocaust survivors Rose and Louis Van Thyn and author of a book highlighting their extraordinary lives and legacy, will deliver a virtual lecture on Thursday, April 8, as part of the College’s Dr. Rose and Mr. Louis Van Thyn Memorial Lecture Series named for his parents.

The 2021 Van Thyn Memorial Lecture based on Nico Van Thyn’s book Survivors: 62511, 70726 – Two Holocaust stories, from Amsterdam to Auschwitz to America, will be presented via Zoom at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 8. The event is free and open to the public, but pre-registration is required at Centenary students can earn 50 Passport Points for attending the virtual event.

Nico Van Thyn was eight years old when he came to the United States with his parents from their native Amsterdam, the Netherlands, in January 1956. He spent most of his early life in Shreveport, graduated from Woodlawn High School and Louisiana Tech University, and had a 45-year career as a sports journalist. Van Thyn worked as the sports editor for the Shreveport Journal and Shreveport Times and as sports copy editor for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram for ten years. He published Survivors: 62511, 70726, a collection of memories of and reflections about his parents, in 2016.

"Nico's book is rich with historical information,” said Dr. Lisa Nicoletti, professor of art history and visual studies at Centenary. “It builds on his parents' legacy of bravely giving testimony about the Holocaust to fight intolerance and hatred. Our webinar participants will be deeply moved by all the family photographs and stories Nico will share, from before and after the war."

Centenary’s Van Thyn Memorial Lecture Series was established in November 2009 to honor Holocaust survivors Rose and Louis Van Thyn. The Van Thyns dedicated themselves to retelling their stories so that people would not forget or repeat the horrors of the Holocaust, and Rose Van Thyn was awarded the honorary Doctor of Humane Letters at Centenary’s 2002 commencement exercises in recognition of her extraordinary community service. The Van Thyn Memorial Lecture Series provides educational opportunities for Centenary students and members of the surrounding community, with a goal of teaching about the history of the Holocaust, recognizing signs of intolerance, and providing a means for preventing prejudice and hatred.


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