Daughter of Canada’s last POW Nagasaki bomb survivor to speak at Stittsville United Church

Roslyn Franken, daughter of two unlikely survivors of World War II, will be giving an inspirational Remembrance Day presentation about her parents’ life story as told in her book, Meant to Be. You can hear Roslyn’s incredible story at 7:00 pm on November 10 at the Stittsville United Church.

Roslyn’s father, John Franken, survived the Nagasaki atomic bomb as a Dutch Prisoner of War in Japan. Her mother, Sonja Franken (née Pagrach), survived the concentration camps in Nazi Europe. She faced death in the gas chambers at Auschwitz and survived.

Roslyn will tell the remarkable story in her book, Meant to Be, about how her parents survived captivity continents apart during WWII in the most unlikely of circumstances, and met to find everlasting love in Montreal, Canada, against all odds. She also shares the lessons learned from her parents as the daughter of these two heroic survivors that can help us all to better our lives and make our world a better place as needed today, more than ever.

When John passed away in Ottawa at age 94, he was recognized nationally as the last Canadian POW Nagasaki Atomic bomb survivor. Even into his 90’s, John Franken, was an active participant in the Canadian government program called The Memory Project whereby war veterans go to schools to tell young people about their wartime experiences in hopes that history will not be repeated.

Their daughter, Roslyn Franken, is following in her father’s footsteps by giving presentations to diverse audiences including schools across Canada and the United States to —

  • Help young people boost their awareness, compassion and empathy for the experiences of victims and survivors of WWII in Europe and Asia;
  • Learn about the dangers of discrimination, and what bullying, hate and evil can lead to if we don’t stop it;
  • Embrace a greater spirit of interfaith and interracial tolerance and respect; and,
  • Be inspired by Roslyn and her parents with a greater sense of hope and resiliency in the face of adversity.

Roslyn will be available for book signing following the presentation. Refreshments will be served and a free-will offering will be received.

Her parents’ story was the subject of a CBC Gemini award-nominated television documentary and a feature film production of Roslyn’s book, Meant to Be, is currently in development.

For more information, call the Church at 613-836-4962 or email suchurch@primus.ca.



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