The Tin Ring

life1

On 15th March 1939 Germany invaded and occupied Czechoslovakia. New laws were introduced immediately which separated the Jews from the rest of the population. Their possessions were gradually confiscated. Businesses, shops, bank accounts, radios, domestic animals, staff were disallowed followed by the expulsion from all state educational establishments of Jewish students. A sudden catastrophy and worse was to come. Concentration camps were built, some with gas chambers to exterminate the whole Jewish population from occupied Europe (Austria, Germany, Czechoslovakia, Poland, France, Belgium, Holland, Norway etc.) to fulfil a German dream of a “One thousand years of a pure Aryan race” – read German – occupying Europe. We were ordered to leave home and were transported to Terezin. From there most people were sent to the East, most of them to the infamous Auschwitz where majority of them – men, women and children – were killed in gas chambers on arrival. Only the young, capable of hard labour were spared and sent elsewhere to work as long as their strength lasted before they died, too. Everybody had to fight for their own life as best as they could. I had my boyfriend’s ring with me which represented the symbol of love and hope for me and kept me going, regardless of hard conditions wherever I was. When the war finished in May 1945 it transpired 6 million of European Jews including my whole family perished. My mother was gassed in Auschwitz; father died on a death march from there, my sister in Bergen-Belsen and my brother was shot trying to escape from a camp. Only I survived.


'Only the young, capable of hard labour were spared and sent elsewhere to work'


To Life 3

'Calmness is strength'

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My Suitcase

My Suitcase