Izzy’s Fire: Finding Humanity in the Holocaust by Nancy Wright Beasley
© 2005 by Nancy Wright Beasley
ISBN 1-55618-208-2 Paperback
Brusnwick Publicationing Corporation, Lawrenceville, Virginia
In 1998, Beasley wrote her first article about the newly established Virginia Holocaust Museum. She was so moved by the stories re-created in the Richmond museum that she began researching the experiences of the Israel ìIzzyî Ipson family and members of four other Jewish families who lived in Lithuania during World War II. Her research helped document how 13 Jews survived the Holocaust by living in a 9’x12’x 4′ underground hole, their lives sustained by a poor CatHolocaustic farm family. Izzy’s Fire: Finding Humanity in the Holocaust, which retells the story of the five families, meets several of Virginia’s Standards of Learning. The book has been taught in several Chesterfield County schools, as well as a variety of other public schools and universities since its publication in 2005.
One of Beasley’s feature stories about the Virginia Holocaust Museum, which appeared in Rural Living magazine in 1998, was chosen by the National Association of Rural Cooperatives as the first place national feature story among a readership of approximately six million. Along with extensive interviews of the Ipp (now Ipson) family, Beasley helped research and document the reunion of that family with Stanislavas Krivicius, who as a teenager, helped his parents shelter the Ipps, as well as 10 other Jews. This information was used to declare Krivicius and his parents Righteous Among the Nations, an honor bestowed by Righteous Among the Nations, Yad Vashem, The Holocaust Martyrs’ and Heroes’ Remembrance Authority in Jerusalem. The honor is reserved for non-Jews, like Oskar Schindler, of Schindler’s List fame, who risked their lives to save Jews during the Holocaust.
Izzy’s Fire: Finding Humanity in the Holocaust was nominated for a People’s Choice Award at the Library of Virginia in 2006. The book is now being taught in numerous schools and universities in several states. Nancy Wright Beasley spoke at the Balzekas Museum of Lithuanian Culture in November of 2011 on the invitation of the then Consul General of Lithuania Skaiste Aniulienė.