Max Glauben, who survived the Nazi invasion of his hometown of Warsaw and internment in a death camp before he immigrated to the U.S. and became a longtime proponent of the Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum, died April 28 on Holocaust Remembrance Day. He was 94.
Born Moniek Mendel Glauben on Jan. 14, 1928, Max grew up in Warsaw, Poland with his mother and father, Faiga and Isaak, and little brother, Heniek.
Glauben immigrated to the U.S. in 1947 and eventually joined the U.S. Army. He was stationed in Fort Hood. After that, he moved to Dallas.
He didn’t finish his education past age 11, having lost both of his parents and his brother during the Holocaust, but he told thousands of schoolchildren about what happened to him and his family over the years and participated in the International March of the Living, helping lead young people to Poland and Israel to learn about the Holocaust.
“I feel like God has placed me here for a certain purpose. That I would speak up for the ones that didn’t make it,” Glauben said in a speech shared by the Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum.
In the late 1970s, Glauben was a part of a group of local Holocaust survivors, who sought to create a memorial center in Dallas, and in 2019, their goal was achieved with the opening of the 55,000-square-foot Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum in 2019.
“Max embodied the spirit of resiliency. He turned the atrocities inflicted upon him, his family, and six million Jews during the Holocaust into a message of kindness, love, and optimism,” said museum president and CEO Mary Pat Higgins. “He taught us that there is hope in hopelessness and that one person can make a difference.”
Glauben’s story is among 12 testimonies from Holocaust survivors that appear via a holographic, pre-recorded video interview in the Dimensions in Testimony Theater. The details of his experience are staggering – he survived the Warsaw ghetto, five concentration camps, and a death march to Dachau before being liberated by the U.S. Army on April 23, 1945.
In an interview for filming his testimony, Max said, “I thought that my knowledge could cure the hatred and bigotry and the killings in this world if somebody can listen to my story, my testimony, and be educated even after I’m gone.”
Glauben will be the featured speaker at the museum’s Dimensions in Testimony through the month of May. Afterward, he will continue as the featured survivor each Friday.
He was recognized in 2021 with the museum’s Hope for Humanity award. He was named “Texan of the Year” in 2019 by The Dallas Morning News, and in 2020, he received an honorary doctor of humane letters degree from SMU in recognition for his exceptional and extensive work combatting intolerance.
Max is survived by his loving wife of nearly 69 years, Frieda, their three children, seven grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.