Survivor Lily Ebert ‘so touched’ by personal letter from King on 100th birthday

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Survivor Lily Ebert ‘so touched’ by personal letter from King on 100th birthday

Charles has praised Lily's 'extraordinary strength of spirit, resilience and courage' in his letter to her

Holocaust survivor Lily Ebert MBE has said she is “so touched” to receive a letter and flowers from King Charles to honour her 100th birthday.

The Hungarian-born survivor, who now lives in London, received the personal letter on the “very special occasion” praising Lily’s “extraordinary strength of spirit, resilience, and courage” which he said is “admired more than I can possibly say”.

The King added: “The terrible suffering which you and your family endured can never be adequately described.”

Lily said: “I feel honoured by His Majesty the King’s support for my work as a Holocaust survivor advocate for the wider Jewish and survivor communities.

“I was so touched to receive a birthday card and the personal letter from the King, along with the most beautiful bouquet of flowers.”

Letter from King Charles to Lily Ebert

Lily said the King’s actions in “challenging times for the Jewish community is deeply reassuring and means a lot to me”.

In a message to Jewish News readers, Lily said: “Hold on to hope knowing that better days will come… appreciate every aspect of life now matter how small and make the best of what you have.”

Lily was born in Bonyhád, Hungary, the eldest daughter in a family of six children.

The Nazis invaded Hungary in March 1944, and, in July 1944, when Lily was 20 years old, she along with her mother, younger brother and three sisters were deported to Auschwitz-Birkenau.

Her mother Nina, younger brother Bela, and younger sister Berta were immediately sent to the gas chambers, whilst Lily and her two other sisters, Renee and Piri, were selected for work in the camp.

After she was liberated, Lily travelled with her surviving sisters to Switzerland in order to start rebuilding their life. In 1953 she was reunited with her other brother, who had also survived the Nazi camp and slave-labour system.

Flowers from King Charles

The family emigrated to Israel where she married and had three children, before settling in London in 1967. Lily now has 10 grandchildren and 36 great grandchildren.

She co-authored Lily’s Promise: How I Survived Auschwitz and Found the Strength to Live, with her her great-grandson Dov Forman in 2021. She was also awarded the British Empire Medal (BEM) in the 2016 New Year Honours for services to Holocaust education and awareness.

Lily was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the 2023 New Year Honours for services to Holocaust education.

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