Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Samuel Biegun - February 13, 1983

Hearing News of the War

Had you--did you know at this time what was going on in--with the, with the Jews in Poland?

Yeah, the last, the last letter we had from home they said uh, that we were better off and the uh, they knew that they were going to get killed. It was the last letter, that's it.

Do you remember the date?

The year probably '41, after the war started because it was uh, very close to the border and it probably took a few days off you know, they were--well, I know what, what happened in the town because people came. The people that--no, nobody survived from my family--a lot of family from my parent's families, they all got killed, yeah.

All the people that were back in Pinsk.

Yes. What happened in Pinsk is they uh, when we came--went back from Russian to Poland--to Pinsk uh, we didn't go to Pinsk, but the, the people from the villages told us what happened there. When they came in they made a ghetto and surrounded and it took from fifteen to fifty years uh, outside the city, like for--to work--to do some with the shovels and everything and they shot 'em right there. So...

And they what?

They got killed--they shot 'em.

They shot them, okay, they shot them.

And they made a ghetto like uh, the women and all the men and children and then they massacred them again.

Had you known at the time what was going on?

No, not before the war ended. I didn't know about it.

You had no news of what was going on.

No, no, we had no news at all. We heard on the news that, you know, something going on but we didn't know exactly. We couldn't believe it's going to happen.

You never tried to go back before the war was over to see if you could--if there's anything to be done.

Well, my father and brother they passed--when we passed by the--everything was burned. They couldn't recognize it.

When you went back later.

Burned to the ground. Yes. I was--I wasn't there. I didn't go back. But they passed by the--there was nothing to go to.

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