My Mother’s Death

     I grew up in orphanages in Russia and Poland. I do not remember my father at all, and I only remember my mother’s death.      When I was three years old, my family was sent to a labor camp in Komi, Northern Russia, after we fled from our hometown Wyszkow, Poland, which had been bombed. I remember that my mother was not with us for some time; she was sick in the hospital. When she came back, she acted very strange; for instance, she once tried to put my brother’s red boots on my feet. I was angry with her about that. I remember her...

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My Brother Enoch, Found and Lost

     When my mother died in 1942, my 14-year old uncle took charge of us. My uncle went to the commandant of the labor camp and asked for advice on what to do with two orphaned small children. After a phone call the commandant told my uncle that he found a place for us in an orphanage. It was a harsh wintertime, and what I remember specifically was that we had no shoes at all. I remember the long journey by a horse-driven sleigh. I also remember that a woman came and took my brother on a small sleigh, and that was the last time I ever saw my...

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Farewell to Izaak

     I am Felicia Wertz, Izaak’s niece, residing in St. Louis, Missouri, USA. Although I am not physically present at this memorial service, I feel your pain of loss.      Izaak was my closest uncle, my mother’s brother, who lived with us in Wyszkow, Poland. When the Second World War broke out, I was only two years old, and my brother Gena, who is not with us anymore, was only a year old. Our native town, Wyszkow, was bombed out, and we were forced to escape to Russia. My parents and Izaak were sent to a forced labor camp. My parents died,...

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