News Beth Luers To Present Hitlers Wrath When Hatred Takes Root At Gc - Garrett College

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Campus News

October 10th, 2021

Beth Luers to present "Hitler's Wrath, When Hatred Takes Root" at GC

Former professor featured in Joan Crawford Lecture Series this fall

Beth Luers

Beth Hurley Luers is pictured with Holocaust survivor Leo Bretholz. Bretholz was sent from a transport camp in Drancy, France in a cattle car. He and another young man escaped from that cattle car before it reached Auschwitz.

As part of the Joan Crawford Lecture Series of presentations this fall, Garrett College is pleased to announce Beth Luers will present to the community on ‘Hitler's Wrath, When Hatred Takes Root' on Wednesday, October 27 at 6 p.m. in room 111 in the GIEC Building on the McHenry campus. Light refreshments will be served.

Beth Hurley Luers was a humanities professor Garrett College for over 30 years, where she taught history and cultural geography courses. She has a life-long interest in the Holocaust and its lessons and strived to pass them on to her students.

"History is a viable reference for the present and the future," Luers said. "I tried to teach my students that history is not dead."

She continued, "I tried to get my students to recognize patterns of history, often the actions that leaders took that failed over and over and over again. My hope is that they can recognize one of these patterns and stop it before it takes hold. One of those patterns is what happens when hatred takes root – the results are tragic, the subject of my talk as it applies to Hitler."

Since retiring in 2016, she continues to present on different aspects of the Holocaust to high school and college students, in addition to a Jewish Remembrance ceremony in Newport News, Va. Her first book Creating Light was published in 2016 and features Holocaust survivors Leo Bretholz, Martin Gray, and Thomas Buergenthal.

"I do this because the lessons from the Holocaust are still viable today," said Luers. "I do this because more than six million people cannot tell their own stories."

In memory and in honor of the dynamic educator Joan R. Crawford, the Garrett College faculty created the Joan Crawford Lecture Series. Crawford, who died on October 5, 2010, served the College community for more than 30 years. She joined the staff of the fledgling community college in 1972 and worked in many capacities in the decades that followed, including serving as the head of the humanities division and director of enrollment. After her retirement, Crawford was named Professor Emerita.

The Joan Crawford Lecture Series of presentations are offered free of charge and the public and community members are invited to attend. For more information, persons may contact Jenny Meslener at 301-387-3022 or

Creating Light by Beth Luers

Available on Kindle

Creating Light

Authored by Beth Hurley Luers

The book presents 3 Holocaust survivors, Leo Bretholz, Martin Gray, & Thomas Buergenthal, and what they have done to give back to the world to make it a more humane place when that same world tried to kill them. Lessons in moving forward, and brotherhood.