This week's Yizkor book excerpt on the JewishGen Facebook page #YizkorBooks

Bruce Drake
 

As a young girl, Esther Brand was “Saved by Righteous Gentiles” — the
title of her account from the Yizkor book of Turka, a town that sat by
the Stryj River in western Ukraine. At times, she walked the streets
not wearing the yellow Star of David patch as ordered by the Germans
on pain of death, but one day she was overtaken by fear and put it on
her arm. She approached a farmer to ask if he would like to purchase
kitchen utensils from her house in exchange for food, but once there,
he said to her: “I saw announcements that you must be prepared to go
to the Sambor Ghetto. We have no children at home, and we want to
perform a good deed in this world and save a young soul from
extermination.”

And for two years, he did just that, hiding her in a crate, and then a
haystack and then his attic. She witnessed the fate she had avoided
befalling other Jews of Turka, watching from a window for hours as the
Jews were being marched to the Sambor ghetto, “walking with suitcases,
packages and sacks. Some wept, and others were just sad. From time to
time, they peered backward, as if to cast a final glance at their
houses in which they and their ancestors had lived - and who knew if
they would see them again.”

Esther did get to see Turka again after the Soviets drove out the
Germans. But all that was left “was a heap of ruins, without any
Jewish remnant.”

URL: https://www.facebook.com/JewishGen.org/posts/2551878231500983?__tn__=K-R

Bruce Drake
Silver Spring MD

Researching: DRACH, EBERT, KIMMEL, ZLOTNICK
Towns: Wojnilow, Kovel

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