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Brussels: Medal of Honor awarded to Tatiana and Andra Bucci​

Elena Basile, the Italian Ambassador to Belgium, conferred the medal of the Order to the Merit of the Italian Republic upon Liliana (Tatiana) Bucci who survived the Holocaust together with her sister Alessandra (Andra) Bucci. Brought to Auschwitz on 4 April 1944, Tatiana and Andra were respectively 6 and 4 years old when they reached the Nazi lager together with their family. Born in Fiume (Rijeka), the Bucci sisters were separated from their mother immediately after their arrival and, only thanks to the benevolence of a blokova – the woman in charge of the blocks in which people were detained – did they avoid being submitted to the experiments of Josef Mengele, who was responsible of the death of a great many children detained in the concentration camp. The insignia is a motu proprio conferral by the President of the Republic, Sergio Mattarella, and was awarded to Tatiana Bucci at the presence of her family at the Ambassador’s Residence in Brussels. The insignia is awarded in recognition of the precious contribution made by Ms Bucci through her testimony to promote the founding democratic values of our Republic among the younger generations. Every year, Tatiana and Andra Bucci, despite their age, continue to accompany students in a voyage through memory to Birkenau and Aushwitz to give them a first-hand narration of life in the lager. Andra Bucci will receive the insignia from Italian Diplomats in the United States because the woman has long been living in California.