Moniek Milberger

"The way our dad lead his life was his message: He was a generous and happy soul and he always put his family first."

Name at birth
Moniek Milberger
Date of birth
Where were you born?
Where did you grow up?
Lodz, Poland
Name of father, occupation
Abraham Milberger, Bookbinder
Maiden name of mother, occupation
Sarah Weintraub, Homemaker
Immediate family (names, birth order)
Parents, Moniek, oldest; Motek, youngest
How many in entire extended family?
Who survived the Holocaust?
Three first cousins and me
To oversimplify, we lived a good life in Lodz before the war.  I moved into the Lodz Ghetto when it first was established with my father and my younger brother.  My mother passed away just before the war started.   The three of us were in the ghetto until it was fully liquidated.  We were on one of the last transports out of the ghetto, to Auschwitz, August, 1944.  My father and I were at Birkenau for four to six weeks, when we were suddenly taken away to be moved to another camp.  My brother, Motek, was not allowed to leave Birkenau to go with us.  That was the last time my father saw my brother.  
My father died just weeks before liberation, at Ahlem.  I was reunited with my cousins in Marbourgh, Germany.  I signed up to go with Jewish orphans by ship to America and went there in 1946.  I ended up in St. Paul, MN and was taken in by Adeleine Fremland and her then first husband Barney Garber.  Adeleine was instrumental in teaching me English and enrolling me in high school.  She was the one who convinced me to go to the University of Minnesota where I received a business degree.  I became a citizen and was drafted into the U.S. Army during the Korean War and was stationed in Germany.  I met my wife to be in Detroit; we married and settled down there.
Name of Ghetto(s)
Name of Concentration / Labor Camp(s)
What DP Camp were you after the war?
Where did you go after being liberated?
Marbourgh, Germany for one year
When did you come to the United States?
Where did you settle?
St. Paul, Minnesota
How is it that you came to Michigan?
I had first cousins in Detroit.
Occupation after the war
Barbara Schiff, Medical lab technician and Homemaker
Stacey Crane, CPA and Endowment Director at the Jewish Federation of Metro Detroit; Avery Milberger, MD, Anesthesiologist, Henry Ford Health System; Sharon Milberger, ScD, Director of Health Promotion and Disease Prevention, Henry Ford Health System.
Eight: Sarah Crane, Ilene Crane, Alex Milberger, Justin Milberger, Kyla Milberger, Noah Milberger, Jacob (Koby) Berman, and Andrew Berman
What do you think helped you to survive?
Dad attributed his survival mostly to luck. That combined with his ability to read a situation and make quick decisions somehow worked for him.
What message would you like to leave for future generations?
The way our dad lead his life was his message: He was a generous and happy soul and he always put his family first.
Biography given by Stacey Crane, Moniek's daughter
Interview date:

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