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Mural of Holocaust survivor Eva Kor to be painted on downtown building

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Posted at 10:46 AM, Oct 12, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-12 15:47:29-04

INDIANAPOLIS — Eva Mozes Kor only stood 4-feet-9-inches in real life, but she will join Reggie Miller, Kurt Vonnegut and Mari Evans by having a larger-than-life mural of her painted on a building in Downtown Indianapolis.

The 53-foot-tall mural of Kor will be painted by Hoosier artist Pamela Bliss on the south wall of the 500 Festival Building at 21 Virginia Ave. Kor, a Holocaust survivor and forgiveness advocate who lived in Terre Haute for 59 years, died July 4, 2019 at age 85.

“Eva has left an everlasting impact on Hoosiers, our country and our world. This mural will be an enduring reminder of her spirit of forgiveness and love,” Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb said.

Work on the mural began last week and is expected to be complete by the end of November, according to a news release from 500 Festival. The mural will be based off a photo of Kor that was taken during a visit to Auschwitz.

Fundraising for the project was led by volunteers from "Team Eva," a group of individual donors and philanthropic organizations.

Born in Portz, Romania, Kor moved to Terre Haute in 1960. Kor was 10 years old when she and her twin sister, Miriam, were imprisoned at Auschwitz and subjected to medical experiements by Dr. Josef Mengele.

She began telling her story in schools in 1978 and became an advocate for Holocaust survivors in the 1980s when she founded Children of Auschwitz Nazi Deadly Lab Experiments Survivors (CANDLES).

In 1995, the same year she opened the CANDLES Holocaust Museum and Education Center, Kor returned to Auschwitz on the 50th anniversary of its liberation and publicly forgave the Nazis, a decision that would define her legacy.

Editor's note: A previous version of this story incorrectly spelled the artist's name. Her last name is Bliss, not Bess.