Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Miriam Biegun - August 10, 1983

Running Away to the Woods

Who was with you when you went to the woods?

Oh, there was a couple families, you know, neighbors. They live right now in Israel. And mine uncle and auntie, and her, mine auntie's sister and her husband, and a couple families ???. I don't know, exactly don't remember...

And your sister.

Yeah. My sister and my brother.

I forgot to ask you, how old is your sister?

Oh, mine sister is uh, let's see from '42, she's fifty years old.

But, she was what, she was about nine or ten then?

Yeah, she was about five years older than I.

And your brother?

The brother is about two, three years older than I.

So the three of you were children? Do you remember--did you ask any questions about the baby? Did you...

No. Never asked questions. They told me, don't ask. And, I don't know, now that I think back, it's not like children today, you know, asking questions, I mean a four--year old child today, asks all kind of questions. But, I never asked question because I couldn't figure out what happened you know.

Do you, do you think you were wondering where your parents had gone?

Yeah, I was wondering because there was--when we came to the woods, there was a lots of children without parents. And there was one guy that used to, anywhere he find a child, you know, he took it in. So there was a lot, but there was a couple children, they have parents, and I always used to wonder, and once I asked how come I don't have parents...so they said to me, "Don't you remember? They shot them." You know, and that's that.

Even though you had seen them shoot your mother, you still...

Still I wondered.

When did you find out about your father?

Mine father, I found out later on because, you see, I saw them take him away. I saw them put big trucks, and I saw him go on the truck, but I never saw him back. So after they shot the mother, I figure out they shot the father too.

Your mother never told you that...

Mother didn't say, you know, she was broken up.

You think she was just in shock after that?


Now, you escaped in the night to the woods. Did you get any help from, uh...

Yeah, we got a couple helps from young, a couple Russians, you know, and the farmers, it's--they expected us. They knew we were coming.

What did they do for you?

You know, they took us deep in the woods. And there were already Jews in the woods. And lots of Russians...soldiers. It's--they didn't have time to run away when the German came.

I see.

So they run to the woods.

So they joined the partisans.


Were they Jewish partisans or...

Not all of them. No.

Mixed Russian and...


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