Everyday Heroes: A Teddy Bear’s Tale
By: eBay News Team
Peter's toy was destroyed in World War II. Nearly 80 years later, a replica found on eBay helps him share his story.
Millions of people from all around the world connect on eBay. Each time that happens, something positive happens in the world. These are the stories of everyday people on eBay making an extraordinary difference in the lives of others.
In 1939, two-year-old Peter Krohn was on a train with his family in Italy. He screamed as Nazi officers cut up his favorite teddy bear, looking for valuables during an inspection. The distraction may have saved his family from being deported to a concentration camp, as the officers didn’t find the gold coins Peter’s mother had hidden in a bag of caramels.
Nearly 80 years later, Peter — who now lives in California — found a replica of his cherished bear on eBay. It was listed by a U.K. seller who had acquired the bear at a house clearance.
“I thought, I’ll put it on eBay, on the world platform,” said Stephen Latty, who sells vintage and antique finds. “There must be someone out there who’d love it. After a few days Peter got in contact with me and told me his story.”
“I was really pretty darn excited when I saw this particular bear,” Peter said. “It just felt right.”
The bear not only reminds Peter of his treasured childhood toy — it also helps him share his family’s story with others. He volunteers with The Story Project of Sonoma County, visiting schools with other Holocaust survivors to share stories of the past and help teach students moral and ethical responses to prejudice, indifference and hatred.
“The Story Project is a way of passing along to younger generations the value of love and acceptance of other human beings who are different,” Peter said. “For kids to hear the story and see the bear — it’s a visual reminder.”
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