Festival of Praise to honor Aledo resident

Staff Writer
Aledo Times Record
Jesse Crawford

A Festival of Praise will be held at LeClaire Park Bandshell in Davenport Iowa on Saturday, Sept. 4 at 7 p.m. Headline band is Christian artist Mercy Me with proceeds from the concert to A Night to Honor Israel this year to build a bomb shelter for women and children in Israel.

During the Festival, Hero to Me will be sung while Jewish Holocaust survivor Esther Schiff gives Hero to Me Medals to Quad Cities prison camp liberators and eyewitnesses to the Jewish horror of WWII. 

Six American soldiers (liberators and/or eyewitnesses) have been invited to participate in the honors are listed below along with a short description of their services during the war. Artist Dennis Wilson will be there to share his beautiful Hero to Me song as a tribute.

1) Jesse Crawford -  Aledo - Rescued Jewish Prisoners from work camp, Germany

2) Dr. Paul Hauck - Moline - German Translator - Eyewitness to horror at  Nordhausen

3) Dick Henneman - Davenport, Iowa - Liberated 75,000 prisoners at Mossberg P.O.W camp in Bavaria

4) Roy Kouski - Port  Byron - Rescued Jewish Prisoners from work camp, Germany

5) C. Eugene Parmer - Maquoketa, Iowa - Omaha Beach - Shot the lock off the gate of Dachau

6) Saul Schiff - East Moline - Normandy, Battle of the Bulge, - Jewish American Eyewitness to horror at Dachau; Married Jewish Survivor Esther Stiller from Poland

Jewish survivor Esther Stiller Schiff: “I thought the war would last forever but my liberation was heralded by the sudden appearance of “all those nice looking American soldiers.” With the end of the war, I was able to stop pretending so I dropped my assumed name and became myself again. I was contacted by my American relatives who brought me to the United States in late 1946. I was in the United States only eight months before I married one of those handsome soldiers, Saul Schiff, who had just been discharged from the U.S. Army.  We came to the Quad Cities when Saul’s work as an engineer brought him to the Rock Island Arsenal.”