JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Croatian and other Jews interned in Italy during WWII #general

K. & L. Bertelsen <lulu@...>

Dear colleagues

For years I have been trying to identify the fate of
one of my late step-GF's sisters, Irene nee GOLD RADAN,
b.1885 Vienna, who lived in Zagreb for 20+ years prior
to WWII. I received invaluable assistance >from
archives in Australia and Vienna, >from DOEW Vienna,
Zidovska opcina Zagreb, USHMM, Yad Vashem, Jewishgen
holocaust databases, etc.

A few years ago DOEW Vienna found the names of Irene nee
GOLD RADAN, her son, her sister and her niece,
in a book by Marco Minardi, about some Zagreb Jews
taken to Italy by the retreating Italian Army,
and "interned" in Calestano, Parma, Italy.

I have been searching fruitlessly for this book ,
but after Kitty suggested a Google search for Calestano,
I finally hit gold. I emailed the Comune di Calestano
and subsequently Comune di Calestano sent me two
incredible books (both in Italian).

The first book "Propaganda antiebraica sulla stampa
parmense (1938-1945) - e gli ebrei "internati a Calestano"
by Pietro Bonardi, details the history of a small
number of Jews >from Zagreb, and elsewhere, who
were protected by the Italian army and transported to
Italy, where they were "interned" but lived openly
in Calestano until German invasion of northern Italy
on 8th September 1943.

The second book "Eventi e memoria 1943-1945 - gli
ultimi anni di guerra a Calestano e in Val Baganza" by
Filippo Abelli (the son of an Italian partisan),
details Italian resistance in the area, and also
mentions the Jewish internees in Calestano and their

I have roughly translated some information about my
step-GF's sisters and their adult children. I finally
learned that Irene nee GOLD RADAN committed suicide
in a lonely freezing stable in a small village called
Canesano, on 17th December 1944, when she was being
hunted by the SS and could run no further. She was
59 years old and had a serious heart condition and
it was mid-winter.

Her son, her sister and niece all survived. I am trying
to find out if her niece is still alive - her name
was listed in the 1994 Zagreb phone book (thanks Carol).

from the two books I have extracted the names of the
people who were either transported to Calestano in
December 1941, or subsequently came to Calestano in
1942-3 and found shelter there until 8th September 1943.
Most survived, but some were hunted, arrested and
perished in Auschwitz and other places.

Apart >from my step-GF's two sisters and their adult
children (GOLD-RADAN and GOLD-SCHWARZ), the surnames
of the 15 people transported >from Croatia
(Djakovo KZ?) to Calestano December 1941 were :


Names of refugees who were transferred >from other
internment camps within Italy, or were Jewish Italian
citizens on the run, who came to Calestano at
various times in 1942-1943 included :


Additional information about all these people,
including parents' names, dates/places of birth,
fates and names of some relatives is available.

Irena RADAN's name was on a list of Jews who perished
in Djakovo camp 1942 (Yad Vashem). I only have
one page (R names) which also includes Melania
BEHRMANN RECHNITSER and her twin children. I assume
that all 15 people transported >from Croatia
who arrived Calestano on 20/21 December 1941, possibly
were all >from Djakovo KZ.. So, if anyone thinks their
relatives died in that camp, it might be worth checking
with CDEC Milan or Yad Vashem to ascertain if
Croatian relatives were transported to other
internment camps/villages in Italy.

If anyone had relatives anywhere in Italy during WWII,
the book "The Italians and the Holocaust" by Susan Zuccotti
is also worth reading (in English).

Please note my real address is layakbtl at benalla
stop net stop au

Lorraine Bertelsen

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