Hope that history doesn't repeat itself for LV resident

LAS VEGAS - It's a story of survival for one Las Vegas resident. 

Ben Lesser was 10-years-old when Poland was invaded and almost 80 years later, he watched as racist hate groups rallied in Charlottesville, Virginia.

"They were all slaughtered," Lesser said about his family. "Out of a family of 7, only my sister Lola and I survived."

Lesser showed 8 News Now drawings that Lola painted years later, vivid memories of what happened during the Holocaust.

In one of the paintings, Lola's husband's family hid in a dog house.

"Everyone was pulled out and everyone was shot," Lesser said. "This is Lola and her husband burying the family."

They were shot and killed by people who were driven by racist ideology. Lesser called what happened in Charlottesville, Virginia this past weekend awful.

"When I saw that happening, it was like somebody took a knife and twisted it into my heart. I couldn't believe it," Lesser said.

Lesser survived the Holocaust, but he remembers clearly what happened and how it got to that point.

"The Nazi's did not start with killing. It all started with hate...hate propaganda, this is how it began," Lesser added.

Lesser married his wife Jean in 1950 and also became a successful realtor. he now urges other people not to stay silent.

"I come from an era where there were only 3 types of people in the world and there were the killers, the victims, and the bystanders," Lesser said. The rest of the world were bystanders."

Lesser is now 88-years-old and has lived in Las Vegas for the past 20 years. He found the Zachor Holocaust Remembrance Foundation in 2009 https://www.zachorfoundation.org/

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