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Author of WW II Books Visits Bend

Posted By:  Liz Goodrich
Date Posted:  1/25/2004

Author Elfi Hornby will be at the Bend Public Library on Sunday, February 1 at 2:00 p.m. to read from and discuss her books. This program is free and open to the public.

“I am one of a rapidly shrinking group of living witnesses to a horrific time in history,” says Hornby, who grew up in Germany and had an up close and personal view of Germany, before, during and after WWII. She has written about her experiences in two books titled, Dancing to War and Shadow of Defeat.

As a 16-year-old girl, Hornby was sent to the Russian front to entertain the German Troops. “Sort of like the USO tours.” For six months, Hornby danced in the trenches, often under fire. “My dancing gave the soldiers a little piece of home.” Hornby traveled with an accompanist, but she says on occasion, soldiers with musical talent would join in as well. “My books invite the reader to walk in my shoes through a tragic time in history.” Through her experiences, Hornby has learned lessons she is anxious to share. “People are basically good, but even the best of us can be manipulated and make to think black is white and white is black.”

Born and raised in Munich, Germany, Hornby came to the United States in 1949 and settled in Omaha, NE where she opened a ballet school. She moved to Portland in 1963 to head the Dance Department at Reed College. This program is free and open to the public. For more information about this or other library programs, please call 312-1032.

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