January 29, 2016, Eycke Strickland will read from her memoir “Eyes are Watching, Ears are Listening” during the Peninsula College’s Foothills Writers Series “A Celebration of Self-Published Books” featuring students of Professor Marina Shipova’s Digital Publishing Class. https://www.pencol.edu/news/celebration-self-published-books-topic-feb-4-studium
On YouTube: Excerpts from an interview with Lois Greenberg, Bellevue College, Bellevue, Washington
May 29, 2013, North Coast Writers presents educator, ceramic artist and writer Eycke Strickland in an intriguing review of a momentous time in human history. The free reading starts at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, June 4, at Wine on the Waterfront, 115 E. Railroad Ave., Port Angeles.
Eycke (Laabs) Strickland was born in Germany on the brink of events leading up to World War II. Her father, an architect, risked his life and the lives of his family in helping Jewish refugees to flee Hitler’s terrible Third Reich slaughter. Eycke, an observant and perceptive child, was witness to extraordinary events while living only 11 miles from Auschwitz, Poland, where her father had been assigned. The family fled ahead of the advancing Russian armies, settling back in Germany as refugees themselves. She reads from her memoir chronicling these and other events, “Eyes Are Watching, Ears Are Listening: Growing up in Nazi Germany 1933-1946.” Eycke began her higher academic training after the war, majoring in languages, in both Germany and Switzerland. She focused on English and French, and in her late teens, served a year of work/study in the United States, before returning to Germany to teach conversational German and to work as a translator/interpreter. She met and subsequently married Charles Strickland in 1956. The couple moved to Madison, Wis., so that Charles could complete his Ph.D., while Eycke was hired by the University of Wisconsin Medical School, translating archaic German and French medical literature on the “History of the Origin of the Ossicles.” She also co-authored a number of articles on that subject and helped put Charles through graduate school. Becoming a U.S. citizen in 1963, Eycke gave birth to a son and then a daughter, after her husband joined the faculty at Emory University in Atlanta, Ga. It was there that she began her second career as ceramic artist, producing and teaching ceramics in the studio art department at Emory. Her last ceramic work, a series of seven clay tablets onto which she inscribed her memories of the Holocaust, was exhibited in 1999 at the Schatten Gallery at Emory University. During the 1980s Eycke began doing research on the Jewish Holocaust, traveled to Israel, contacted and then met with survivors who had been rescued by her father. After 23 years of teaching ceramics, she retired in 1997 and together with her husband moved to Port Angeles. There she began writing her memoir primarily from a child’s viewpoint. It was published in 2008 and a translation is being prepared for publication in Germany. For more information, visit Eycke’s website at eyckestrickland.com. When people ask Eycke, “How did you come to choose Port Angeles for your retirement?” she replies that she and Charles “fell in love with the Olympic Peninsula during the summer of 1973, when he was teaching at the University of Washington.” Years later, in 1997, Eycke and Charles retired from Emory, realizing their dream of living on the Olympic Peninsula. http://www.sequimgazette.com/entertainment/article.exm/2013-05-29_north_coast_writers_series_presents_eycke_strickland
February 16, 2010. Witness to Horror Author Eycke Strickland speaks at 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 21, at Congregation Olympic B’nai Shalom about her book, “Eyes are Watching, Ears are Listening: Growing Up in Nazi Germany, 1933-1946.” The talk will be at the Olympic Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, 73 Howe Road, off Barr Road in Agnew. The memoir recounts her discovery of her father’s efforts to save his Jewish workers and their families, as her mother protected the family from Gestapo officials and spies. Her father later was honored by Israel for helping rescue Jews from the Holocaust. Strickland’s book is written from the point of view of a young girl becoming a teenager, in addition to recounting the stories of her parents, she describes the horror she and her siblings witnessed in their own community. http://www.sequimgazette.com/news/article.exm/2010-02-16_witness_to_horror
March 30, 2009. Emory University Report, 2009 Volume 61, Number 25. Eyes and Ears on a Troubled Time. “Much has been written about World War II and the Holocaust from the Jewish perspective. Very little is written from the perspective of a non-Jewish child,” noted Emeritus Professor Eycke Strickland. She put that perspective into action at a recent reading of her autobiographical “Eyes are Watching, Ears are Listening: Growing up in Nazi Germany 1933-1946.” “My parents opposed Hitler’s fascist regime and when the dark shadow of Nazi brutality began to touch our lives, they tried to shield my siblings and me,” she read. Strickland’s father, honored in post-war years by both the German and Israeli governments, tried to protect his family by keeping from them his efforts to protect and shield Jews. —– Leslie King. http://www.emory.edu/EMORY_REPORT/erarchive/2009/March/March30/Soundbites.htm
February 13, 2009. Bellevue College, Bellevue, WA. News and Events. Contact: Bob Adams (425) 564-3081. Author to recount childhood under Nazis, parents’ heroism in rescuing Jews.
BELLEVUE, WASH. – Eycke Strickland, author of the extraordinary war-time memoir, “Eyes are Watching, Ears are Listening: Growing up in Nazi Germany 1933-1946,” will appear in a free, public reading and lecture March 4 at Bellevue Community College.
The event begins at 10:30 a.m. in the college’s Library Media Center, located in the D Building on the south courtyard of the college’s main campus (3000 Landerholm Circle S.E., Bellevue, at the intersection of S.E. 28th St. and 148th Ave. S.E.).
Through vivid anecdotes and perceptive commentary, Strickland juxtaposes childhood adventures against day-to-day fear, and describes her role in helping her parents and siblings endure the terror of Nazism and all-out war.
Eycke (Laabs) Strickland was born in Germany in 1933, the year Hitler came to power. She was just six years old when World War II broke out and adults began whispering about the trouble a man named Adolf was getting them into.
In 1941 the Nazis order her father to move to a small town only 11 miles east of Auschwitz, in southwestern Poland, where as county architect he supervised public construction projects.
The dilapidated cottage and gardens that made up her home were in one way a paradise for Eycke and her siblings, but outside the gate the horrors of the Holocaust unfolded before their eyes. On her way to school Eycke routinely heard the cries of imprisoned Jewish families.
What she did not know at the time, however, was that her father was risking his life by hiding and rescuing large numbers of Jews. Despite posters warning, “Those who help Jews will be killed, ” both parents stood up to Nazi intimidation.
In January 1945, with temperature well below zero, Eycke’s family of seven hurried through the snow to flee Poland on the last available train. Despite being bombed and strafed during the long journey, the family arrived in Germany, hungry and exhausted, but grateful to be alive and together.
The book concludes with Eycke’s memories of her family’s struggle to survive as refugees amidst a society near total collapse.
Eycke emigrated with her American-born husband Charles to the United States in 1958. They settled in Atlanta, where both taught at Emory University, he in history, and she in visual arts. Now, in retirement, they make their home on the northern coast of the Olympic Peninsula.
Eycke Strickland’s BCC presentation is co-sponsored by the college’s Communication Studies Department and Center for Liberal Arts. Her book may be purchased at the BCC bookstore or on her website, at http://www.eyckestrickland.com/. For further information contact Katherine Oleson, Communication Studies Department chair, at (425) 564-3050 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
November 2, 2008, 10 to 11:30 a.m.: Eycke Strickland, author of “Eyes are Watching, Ears are Listening: Growing up in Nazi Germany 1933-1946.” In her memoir, Strickland related her memories as a non-Jewish German youngster living in annexed Poland. Strickland’s father has been recognized as “Righteous Among the Nations” – an honor awarded by Yad Vashem to individuals who risked their lives to save Jewish people during the Holocaust. Sponsored by Temple Beth Am and the WA State Holocaust Education Resources Center. Reading and Discussion. Temple Beth Am, 2632 NE 80th Street, Seattle, WA.
August 1, 2008. “Art Beat” host Karen Hannon interviews Eycke Strickland during the last half hour of the program. “I think that there is a huge need that people know and understand what went on, that the idea of learning from history is crucial.” KONP radio at 1450 AM and 102.1 FM.
May 14, 2008. Author to speak about war years in Germany. Author Eycke (Laabs) Strickland is speaking at Peninsula College’s Studium General program on Thursday, May 15, 2008 from noon to 1 p.m. at the college’s Forks Extension at 71 South Forks Avenue, Forks, Washington.
Strickland is the author of the book “Eyes are Watching, Ears are Listening: Growing Up in Nazi Germany, 1933-1946” and will tell of her experiences as a young girl living in Germany and near the Auschwitz death camp in Poland during the years of World War II. Her father risked his life in helping rescue Jews from the Holocaust during the war and was later honored by Israel. More information is available at her Web site: www.eyckestrickland.com.
May 4, 2008. Nazi Germany seen through the eyes of a child. Liz Welter, Central Wisconsin Sunday staff.Children have a capacity to gorgive and survive terrible tragedy. They understand more than adults fathom, which is integral to “Eyes are Watching, Ears are LIstening,” a memoir from a child’s perspective of life in Nazi Germany during World War II. The author, Eycke Strickland, immigrated to the United States as a young bride in 1958.
The year Adolph Hitler consolidated power in Germany, 1933, was the year of Strickland’s birth. She begins her memoir setting a stage for readers to understand the cunning manipulation using fear and propaganda by the Nazis to warp and twist the young minds of the community school children.
Interwoven through stories of typical German family life, the reader begins to sense the growing awareness among Strickland and her siblings that life is not as idyllic as they perceive.
The author describes how she learns her father is scheming and charming Nazi officials to save his Jewish workers and their families, while her mother is protecting the family from spies and Gestapo officials with extraordinary courage. Woven through the accounts of her parents’ attempts to protect their Jewish friends are Strickland’s and her siblings’ tales of the horrors they witness in their community.
The memoir is written from the point of view of a young girl becoming a teenager. It is poignant and elegantly written. The quick-witted thinking of the parents when confronted by Nazi officials is courageous and prompts the thought of, “Under similar circumstances what would I do?”
May 1, 2008. MARSHFIELD — Eycke Strickland, author of “Eyes are Watching, Ears are Listening: Growing up in Nazi Germany 1933-1946,” will be at Book World, 414 S. Central Ave., from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday. The book is a story of a brave and courageous family during the German of the Third Reich and its aftermath.
April 29, 2008. Book provides child’s view of German life under the Nazis by Liz Welter, Marshfield News-Herald
The horrors of life in Germany during the Holocaust are well documented. But it’s rare to hear the accounts of life under the Nazi regime from the perspective of a child.
A memoir of a German family during World War II, “Eyes are Watching, Ears are Listening,” was recently published. The author, Eycke Strickland, has a son and grandchildren living in the area and will attend an event at Book World while visiting family this week.
The stories about the wartime experiences of his mother’s family were integral to his life, said Eycke’s son, Nils. He lives in Rozellville, is retired from the military and flies a Spirit helicopter for Saint Joseph’s Hospital.
“I was the typical kid, fascinated with the army and playing with toy soldiers. She wanted to make sure we knew the reality of war, that it is a lot of misery and death,” said Nils, describing his mother’s accounts of war and witnessing the devastation of the Holocaust.
While Eycke’s father schemed and charmed Nazi officials to save his Jewish workers and their families, her mother protected the family from spies and Nazi officials with extraordinary courage. Woven through the accounts of her parents’ activities are Eycke’s stories of growing into adolescence and beginning to understand the horrors happening around her family.
“I thought I had heard all the stories growing up but this, as a book, it’s very remarkable, powerful,” Nils said.
“My grandfather was a veteran of World War I and he, like many other veterans, wanted to see democracy work in Germany. There was a fear that Germany would become communist. The Nazis traded on that. The Nazis gave security,” he said.
When a society trades its freedoms for security, Nils said it opens a path to tyranny that can result in a genocide like the Holocaust.
Those who deny the Holocaust happened escape from confronting the reality that humans have the capacity for tremendously evil actions, Nils said.
“It is so difficult to imagine that a country like Germany, with so much culture, could allow something like this to happen,” he said.
“As a German you have two choices,” Nils said. “You come to terms with it and deal with it, or you can pretend that it never happened. That is the path of least resistance emotionally.”
Sunday, April 18, 2008. Peninsula Daily News Sunday Edition, Port Angeles, WA
Memoir readings — Eycke Strickland reads from her memoir, Eyes are Watching, Ears are Listening: Growing up in Nazi Germany, 1933-1946. Free. First reading in the Little Theater at Peninsula College, 1502 E. Lauridsen Blvd., noon to 1 p.m. Second reading in the Fellowship Hall at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, 301 E. Lopez St., 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Strickland signs copies of her book. Phone 360-417-2984.
March 30, 2008. PENINSULA WOMAN, Peninsula Daily News Sunday Edition, Port Angeles, WA. Front page, continued on pp. 3-8.
“Eycke Strickland: Her Story,” by Laura H.F. Callender.
Oxford University Press. Oxford Journals.org: Recently Published Works in Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Biography and Autobiography, Winter 2008. Strickland, Eycke. Eyes Are Watching, Ears Are Listening: Growing up in Nazi Germany 1933–1946: A Memoir. New York: iUniverse, 2008. xix + 294 pp., ill. Recently Published Works in Holocaust and Genocide Studies 2008, 22(3):544-599;doi:10.1093/hgs/den054