The Onondaga Historical Association will host a book talk by local author Gene Fisch on Saturday at 1 p.m.

Fisch recently published his second book, “To Have a Tomorrow: A True Story,” about his family’s life in Poland before and during World War II.

The book recounts the “terrifying” time in which Fisch grew up, as Poland was caught between Nazis in Germany and state-sponsored violence from the Soviet Union.

Gene Fisch. Provided Photo

“My family actually experienced five different occupations, and we were one of few families to survive all five,” Fisch said.

The story follows the family through their time moving to Germany and then the United States as refugees.

The talk starts at 1 p.m. at the OHA museum at 321 Montgomery St. Signed copies of the book will be available for purchase.

The author’s first book “All Love Comes Home: A Promise of Truth” also focuses on his family, in particular his mother and father’s unconditional love and fight to provide a safe home for their children.

Fisch said family and heritage first inspired him to write, and he initially wrote 12 hours each day for 3 to 4 years when he had the first spark to start telling his family’s story.

“It’s an important story about the Slavic people, which have been shortchanged over and over throughout history,” he said.

After Fisch’s family moved to Syracuse, he became one of Central New York’s most celebrated high school basketball players. He was a starting guard for New York University’s nationally ranked team.

Fisch also reached a high level in his corporate career, working in the metals industry and as an entrepreneur. Read more about the author here.

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Julie McMahon

Julie McMahon is editor-in-chief of Central Current. She's lived and worked in Syracuse as a reporter, editor and professor of journalism for more than a decade. Contact Julie at jmcmahon@centralcurrent.org.