I was in the Lodz Ghetto for four years. The Germans rounded up my family members. Only my mother and I were left in our apartment on Piepzowa #4 when they liquidated the ghetto in 1944. The Lodz Ghetto was horrible. I saw Germans killing babies, I saw people dying from hunger. If they ran out of bread in the bread line, you didn’t eat that day. I was very lucky. One time, when my mother was away, the Germans pulled up to round up Jews in our area. I was 14 years old. I locked the door and hid behind the stove. A German soldier broke down the door and came into our apartment. I was so scared. The German looked right at me and said to his partner in the hall, “nobody’s here.”
My mother and I were taken to Birkenau. When they opened the door of the train, they pushed me to the right, and my mother to the left. I didn’t see her anymore. At Birkenau, I saw sparks at night coming from the crematorium; the chimney was going day and night. I saw a lot of people being beaten in the concentrations camps. I was lucky, I was never hit. Someone was watching over me. I was one of the lucky ones; I was picked to go from Birkenau to Auschwitz. They picked 75 boys to become bricklayers. That’s when I got the tattoo, B 8049.
On the death march, we stopped over for a couple of days; there was a big tent they had set up in advance. One time, we were bombed by a German plane; a lot of people were killed. The next day I saw some people eating “meat.” I was liberated in Gunskirchen outside of Linz, Austria.
In the DP camp, we still had to stay in a line to wait for food. I signed up to go to Israel, Australia, or America and went with the first country that would take me. America came through the first so in 1947, I left for New York. The United States Committee helped. When I came to New York, the Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) helped me. They sent me first to an orphan’s home in Cleveland and then to Detroit
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