Dear Friends,

We were in Phoenix when an unexpected email arrived. We were being invited to Koblenz, Germany, for a May 8 laying of Stolpersteine (commemorative brass bricks placed in sidewalks) in remembrance of Hanna’s three aunts who perished in the Holocaust: Johanna, Dora and Elisabeth Schneider.

Laborious digging into the family history, searching for facts while writing A Garland for Ashes (Meine Krone in der Asche) had yielded sparse results. But now the city of Koblenz was acknowledging their history and honoring their memory. 

Almost immediately we knew we were supposed to go. We began to invite friends in Germany to join us.

In Koblenz on May 8 it was already…