Re: Auschwitz or elsewhere? #hungary


David Deutsch <ddeutschca@...>
 

Rivka,

My father was in Auschwitz, where he, his parents, and younger sister
were deported to from, I think, Debrecen. Only my father survived, and
based on his description of events, and those of others who survived, I
believe the following happened:

As the Russian's approached, Auschwitz was hurriedly evacuated by the
Nazis, and many or all of the surviving inmates were forced to march on
foot great distance westward into the heart of remaining German-held
territory. Many died >from the forced march, which I believe took place
during winter weather. Those who survived ended up in concentration
camps in Germany proper (not sure if all survivors were put in the same
camp or distributed through assorted camps). My father ended up in
Dachau, where he was liberated by the Americans.

My point is that if your grand-aunt went to fetch your great-grandmother
*after* liberation of Auschwitz by the Russians, there wouldn't have
been anyone left in Auschwitz to fetch, even if all the other
considerations you cited hadn't been an issue as well (which of course
they were). It seems more likely that your great-grandmother somehow
survived the death march and ended up in Germany proper, where, after
liberation, she'd have been placed in in a DP camp, where your
grand-aunt would have been able to retrieve her.

Kind regards,

David Deutsch

Rivka Nessim wrote:

Virtually all the information I have of my grandfather's family in Budapest
comes >from a letter received >from my great aunt after the war, which was
subsequently lost. My grandmother passed the information on to me orally,
and so far, all my research has confirmed the details she gave me. One
detail bewilders me and I wonder if any of you could throw light on it:

According to my grandmother, her sister in law wrote that after liberation
she had travelled to the camp and brought her mother back to Budapest. (My
g.aunt was married to a war veteran and for this reason was not deported
together with her parents.) Her mother, my great grandmother, died shortly
after. Until recently I assume my great grandparents were deported to
Ausschwitz.

I have been told however, that the above story is incredible, and physically
impossible: the countryside on the way to Auschwitz was one big war front,
and there were no passenger trains. How could a single woman have travelled
all that way and back in just a few days, crossing war zones, and on the
return trip burdened with a very frail, ill, elderly mother?

However, my great grandmother's death certificate does indeed indicate that
she died in Budapest shortly after liberation.

Could it be that some of the Jews of Budapest were taken to a transit camp
closer than Auschwitz? And would they have been able, >from there, to let
their as yet undeported family in Budapest know where they were?

Regards,

Rivka Nessim
Ramot HaShavim, Israel

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