We were sad to hear about the passing of our dear friend Sue Pearson.

Susanne was born in Moravksa Ostrava, Czechoslovakia in April 1928. She lived with her parents in Moravska Ostrava until she was 4, when they moved to Prague. They enjoyed their life in Prague, swimming, ice skating and walking in the Tatra Mountains. Their large flat allowed them to take in Jewish refugees, fleeing Nazi Germany and Austria. For Sue this showed what life was like for Jews under Nazi rule, and she began to realise the danger her family were in when Czechoslovakia was invaded in March 1939. Her parents were able to secure a place for Sue on one of the Nicholas Winton transports from Prague, likely due to her membership in the Red Falcons, an international youth organisation, who were given 20 places by members in England. Sue left Prague in June 1939, living in a Woodcraft Folk camp for a week before being brought to her foster family in Sheffield. She was able to correspond with her parents until October 1941. She discovered after the war that they were deported to the Lodz Ghetto. In the 1970s she learned that her father’s death is recorded as October 1942 in Lodz, and her mother was last listed as being alive there in 1943. She does not know how either of them died. Sue eventually became a teacher in Sheffield.

Sue was a powerhouse as a woman, as a teacher and as an advocate of good Holocaust education. Sue’s wise and practical knowledge of what makes for good teaching and learning was key counsel for the NHCM when developing the concept for the Journey exhibition. There was plenty of backing and forthing and many long discussions with Sue about what should and shouldn’t be included – all delightfully delivered to us in an honest, refreshing and much needed challenging manner.

Sue was key in delivering testimony to thousands of children and supporting their understanding of the Kindertransport and the many challenges presented when leaving home, alone to go to another country, to seek safety. Always keen for students to understand the need for appreciating the beauty of diversity and difference, Sue openly wore her heart on her sleeve about issues that mattered to her and impacted all those that she met.

We will miss Sue for so many reasons. Her lovely Sheffield accent was so endearing and warm. She was a delight, a friend and lay the grounding for good primary Holocaust education. Sue will be sorely missed.