By Ernie McCray
I met a woman named Eleanor Ramrath Garner early in April at a nice party at a beautiful Del Mar home with a wonderful view on a warm inviting sunny day.
The gathering had everything I like: delicious food; refreshing drinks; interesting witty people, scholars all, practically, filled with colorful stories to tell and they didn’t mind telling them.
Some of them had written doctoral studies and books and essays for professional publications. Eleanor happened to mention that she was an author. She didn’t say what her book was about but something about her made me want to read it. So I looked for it on Amazon.
And there it was: “Eleanor’s Story, an American Girl in Hitler’s Germany.” I clicked on “See a random page” and a picture appeared of Eleanor’s little brother and sister on Christmas Day in 1945 with the words “This was our best Christmas ever because we had survived the bombings, the Battle of Berlin, and hunger.”
I was sold. And, oh, what a riveting journey this book takes a reader on. It’s hard for me to believe that a girl, who had gone through what she and her family went through as a result of Adolph Hitler’s madness, was the woman who sat in front of me – so relaxed and at peace with herself, enjoying hors d’ouvere and good company in a chic beach town.