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"I was afraid of this thing, I thought it's sacreligious, to laugh and to smile and go to nightclubs and to coffeehouses."
"I had no money, I had no clothes, I had no luggage, I had nothing."
"When it drizzles and it's cloudy, it brings memories of the day when they took us to be killed, the first pogrom."
"I was the only child there with a number, so I also felt that there was something wrong with me."
"And we were traveling criss-cross Poland looking for surviving Jews."
"The minute the gates opened up, we heard screams, barking of dogs."
"I would never believe that a person can survive standing in the outside in the wintertime without clothes for so long."
"It ended up being called the death march, because the ravines and the gutters, they were all red from blood."
"'Our courage is not shackled/ Life is marvelously beautiful…'"
"That was the last birthday gift from my parents."
"I had false ID and wore a cross."
"There I was, an orphan, a survivor of unspeakable pain and atrocities of the war."
"My mother and several other women organized a clandestine school."
"I paid for these two eggs with a small gold ring that had a ruby in it that my mother sewed into my coat."
"I drank water from puddles. Snow. Anything that I could get a hold of."
"We were finally in the cattle train."
"She was lighting the candles and saying the prayers, and we found this somehow encouraging."
"It was a cattle car as you know, no windows, had no seats and no toilet."
"One of the first in my car, I saw a message scrawled in blood on the wall."
"The hunger in the ghetto was so great, was so bad, that people were laying on the streets and dying."
"And then we were being marched down the streets where there was the small ghetto."
"Fifteen thousand of our people were massacred in that particular day."
"Empty streets, open windows, flowing curtains blowing with the wind. No people."
"The entire sky of Warsaw was red. Completely red."
"They must have taken an enormous chance in doing this."
"Those who resisted or tried to hide were shot."
"I would assume the identity of that person."
"And know that most likely you never see your parents again."
"I put him in the suitcase and I told him that 'you may not cry...'"
"It was a hole in the ground."
Abraham Lewent: "Everyday you walked out in the morning, you see somebody is laying dead, covered with newspapers or with any kind of blanket they found."
Chaim Engel: "So I knew already what happened...that he went to the gas chamber with my friend and I am here separating his clothes."
Charlene Schiff: "In 1941, in the summer, all of a sudden we heard bombs and the airplanes flying overhead."
Gerda Weissman Klein and Kurt Klein: "He held the door open for me and let me precede him and in that gesture restored me to humanity."
Selma Engel: "We went three days and three nights to Sobibor."
Vladka Meed: "And I was with mine package on top of the wall, and the shooting got closer and I was sure that I, this time I am done."
"I was 17. I was free, but what it meant I wasn't sure."
"A skeleton covered with skin, with big blue eyes. And as I turned to look whose reflection I saw, I realized that was my reflection."
"We took wagonload after wagonload of bodies out to the grave site."
"They couldn't drink anything, so we had to feed them with medicine droppers."
"There were women scattered over the floor on scraps of straw, some, some of them quite obviously with the mark of death on their faces."
"The one memory that I have is my mother telling me that I was to go to my room and just pick the few toys that I wanted to take with me and to be fast about it."
"Snow was up to my knees and we had to go all night through the woods and through the snow 'til we came on the other side of the border."
"We took everything into a suitcase, and we grabbed the baby carriage and put it on top of the baby carriage."
"When I left Warsaw I took a knapsack and I had a pair of ski boots and...and, uh, I had one dress, some underwear. That's about it, a comb."
"We had, start sending SOSs because the vessel was floating into the sea, but it was not moving anywhere."
"The entire European continent, people were traveling en masse, going home, going home. Everybody had a place to go but the Jews."
"It was a search for an asylum no matter where."
"We pulled out the bars and we start jumping out."
"We joined up with a group that was going to take us across occupied territory to the Zone Libre."
"So he hid us for several days there, brought us a little food."
"So I would go there and pick up, let's say, a little three-year-old."
"He wore civilian clothes. I had no idea who he was."
"Sweeping the field inch by inch with their dogs, the Germans finally captured the pair."
"With bloody fingernails we dug a dank cellar 'grave.'"
"At that time, a gun and a million dollars, the gun was worth more than a million dollars."
"Everybody had to have somebody and if you, if you didn't them you didn't survive, no matter how strong you were."
"And we knew the only way we can survive if we will stay in the front."
"And it was by the greatest miracle that I survived."
"She would protect me, she would cover me when we were marching, rain, snow, cold."
"'David, you must survive and let the world know what happened.'"
"But as I was already 14 years old, I needed a job on my own in order to be spared."
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Main telephone: 202.488.0400
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