THE BECKERS TRIP TO POLAND AND RUSSIA 
Marty and Teresa Becker, having just returned from an extensive business trip to New York City, Orlando and Los Angeles, were still preparing their digital pictures when the brass Rotary Bell sounded calling the Rotary luncheon to order. With 25 Rotary members in attendance on January 25th, the Beckers presented an outstanding review of their recent trip to Russia, Poland and other Slavic countries. They also shared their experiences in visiting several of the Nazi concentration camps.

Cracow (Krakow) is the second largest and one of the oldest cities in Poland. After the invasion by Nazi Germany at the start of World War II, Cracow was turned into the capital of Germany's General Government. The Jewish population of the city was moved into a walled zone known as the Cracow Ghetto from which they were sent to extermination camps such as Auschwitz. While in Cracow, the Beckers also visited Schindler's factory, later made famous in the movie, "Schindler's List". 

Auschwitz was a network of concentration and extermination camps built and operated in Polish areas annexed by Nazi Germany.  It was the largest of the nearly 50 camps. Birkenau was one of the largest camps and was commanded by Rudolf Hess. Over 1 million people died there..those not killed in the gas chambers died of starvation, forced labor, disease, individual executions and medical experiments.

St. Petersburg, Russia was another stop on their trip. Teresa cited two notable institutions, The Hermitage and Peterhof. The former is a museum of art and culture and one of the largest and oldest in the world. The Hermitage was founded in 1764 by Catherine The Great.  Peterhof contains a series of palaces and gardens laid out on orders of Peter The Great. 

Their trip to Moscow included pictures of the 5th building, now a Hilton Hotel, of Moscow's Seven Sisters. All seven structures are skyscrapers built in the early 1950's.  The Beckers  also showed pictures and discussed their visits to Red Square, St. Basil's Cathedral and Lenin's Tomb.  The Beckers also referenced the recent bombing attack at Moscow's Domodedovo airport. This was the airport they traveled through on their trip out of Russia. 

They ended their presentation with an acknowledgment that "....we are so lucky to be living in North Idaho."