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Famous Refugee

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Liam Barry

on 10 October 2013

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Transcript of Famous Refugee

Destination Australia
Dr Karl Kruszelnicki was born in Helsingborg, Sweden to Polish refugee parents from European concentration camps. His Father had been a member of the Polish resistance and was imprisoned in Russian jails and German concentration camps. His mother's background was hidden from him for a long time, with his mother having told him that she was Lutheran to hide the shame of being Jewish.
Karl's father had the large number 95808 tattooed on his arm which was his concentration camp number. Karl's father was also a refugee smuggler.
Both of his parents were Holocaust survivors. His parents didn't like talking about it this horrific part of their lives to Karl.

Early Life In Australia
Karl was in an Australian refugee camp in Bonegilla, near Albury but later moved to Wollongong. He and his parents lived in a tiny apartment the size of a station wagon. They also got ONE egg per week for the three of them and his parents would make the sacrifice and give Karl, the growing child, that egg.
Dr Karl Kruszelnicki
Dr Karl Kruszelnicki:
Karl Kruszelnicki was born in 1948 in Helsingborg, Sweden. He currently lives in Sydney and is 65 years old. Karl is a scientist, who is best known as an author and science commentator on Australian radio and television. He is also known for his crazy, quirky clothing choices. Unlike his parents Karl follows the Christian religion. He is often referred to as simply Dr Karl.

Dr Karl has worked as a physicist, labourer, roadie for bands, car mechanic, film-maker, hospital scientific officer, biomedical engineer, TV weatherman, taxi driver, and medical doctor.
Karl is now currently working as a science journalist, author and broadcaster. He has so far released 32 books and every Thursday mornings he works on the Triple J Station answering science questions.

Karl's family felt insecure in Sweden. There were wars raging in the bordering countries. His parents had been in multiple German concentration camps and his father was almost killed. They were supposed to migrate to the USA but Karl caught a fever so he had to get vaccinated which delayed his trip to the USA. They however, caught the next boat which happened to be going to Australia.
The Holocaust was the mass murder of approximately six million Jews during World War II. Of the nine million Jews who had lived in Europe before the Holocaust, approximately two-thirds were killed (6 million killed). Over one million Jewish children were killed in the Holocaust, as were approximately two million Jewish women and three million Jewish men. Over 40,000 facilities in Germany and German-occupied territory were used to concentrate, hold, and kill Jews and other victims.
Karl's parents were one of the 3 million lucky people to survive this terrible mass murder incident led by Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party.
Karl's primary education was at Little Flower Primary School, Wollongong NSW.
His secondary school was at Edmund Rice Christian Brothers College, Wollongong.
School was tough for Karl as some people called him a 'wog' and it was difficult to fit in. He had trouble speaking fluent English and one day he was told, "Be quiet you wogs and speak English". So when he attended school unfortunately Karl didn't have many friends.
By the time Karl was about 12 to 14 he started to read one science-fiction book a day.
Karl studied for 15 years at university achieving degrees in Mathematics, Physics, Biomedical Engineering, Medicine & Surgery plus several non-degree years in Astrophysics, Computer Science and Philosophy at the Universities of Wollongong, New South Wales, Sydney and as well as overseas.

Karl married his wife, Mary in Norway under a midnight sun on the longest day of the year. This symbolized that their love would never set.
He has three children - one boy (22 years) and two girls (19 & 11 years).

In 2002, Dr Karl was honoured with the prestigious Ig Nobel prize for improbable research. This was awarded for his ground-breaking research into belly button lint and why it is always blue.
In 2003, Dr Karl was awarded with the great honour of being named ‘Australian Father of the Year'.
In 2012 Karl was named one of Australia's top 100 national living treasures.

In conclusion Dr Karl is a perfect example of the wonderful contributions that refugees can make to our great country Australia. Australia has certainly benefited from his talents and expertise, that could have been lost to the USA. Karl has taught children that science can be fun, interesting and exciting. He has won many awards and is a marvellous scientist who has made some terrific ground breaking discoveries. Even though Karl was discriminated as a child he moved on in life to become a very successful person. Karl is very grateful for his parents generosity and for being in this spectacular welcoming country of ours - Australia!
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