SKOKIE, Ill. (CBS) — Holocaust survivors and their families gathered this afternoon in a Skokie synagogue for what has been the largest survivor event in the Midwest.

Seats were full at the Skokie Valley Agudath Jacob Synagogue to mark the 69th anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi concentration camps.

Steve Katz told the crowd he was among the lucky ones, as he was able to leave Germany in 1940, but had to leave his parents and sibling behind.

Henry Jelen, co-chair of the commemoration committee, says second generation holocaust survivors are to be honored in addition to their parents, for the children are the ones keeping the faith alive.

Survivors and their offspring lit six large remembrance candles – each one representing one million Jews killed in the Holocaust.

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