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Saturday, August 5, 2006

A survivor's tale

SHERBORN

Helen Kuban.jpg
[Photo: Bill Polo/Globe Staff]

The mere fact that Helen Stern Kuban is still alive raises the kind ofquestions that could occupy an entire term of divinity school.

Questions like: If there is a God, how could he allow the astonishing amount of suffering she witnessed during the Nazi takeover of Czechoslovakia and the Holocaust? But if there isn't, how could she have cheated certain death so many times without divine intervention?

Kuban, 87, chooses to believe. She does so despite the fact that calculating the odds of her making it from the gates of Auschwitz death camp in 1942 to her son Karl's family room in Sherborn last week would have the average mathematician reaching for Extra Strength Tylenol.

"I firmly believe in God," she said during an interview to discuss the new memoir, "Born Twice," that she and her son have self-published. "But when I came back, sometimes I did say to myself, "Where is justice?"

Read more about Helen Stern Kuban's remarkable saga in tomorrow's Globe West.

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