Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Simon Cymerath - June 8, 1982

Reuniting with Brothers

Had you found out about your brother yet?


You knew your brother was alive.

I didn't know--this another story.

All right.

This is a big story already, because my brother, when we were separated in Auschwitz, they took him, you know, when the trains half, they cut it off on the way and like it was hundred uh, cattle trains, fifty went in a different area and fifty went to another camp. I came to that camp and I came out from that cattle car. We, we supposed to be in, in barracks, there was no barracks. It was holes what they used the hangars from the aeroplane hangars, and we slept on the cement. But this is besides the point. But I went--was three hangars. I went from hangar--every hangar was a few thousand people and I looked, no brother. And then I found out that on the way they cut off half went in another camp, you know. So, I figure maybe, you know, he, he's still alive but he's in another camp. But I didn't see him 'til after the war. One, he was with another brother. We were three brothers. The youngest brother--I don't know how, he was built husky--he looked fourteen, fifteen but he was only twelve. And they were together. You heard about that ship when they were liberated in uh, Bergen-Belsen. In Hanover the boat got uh, burned with ten thousand uh, refugees. I forgot the name of that ship. See, they supposed to be--he was liberated on the English zone. See was four zones in, in, in, in, in, in Germany. The English, French, American and Russia. He was liberated on the English zone in Bergen-Belsen. So, he was there, but that uh, in Hanover was a, a port, you know, with all the ships. And they were counting to five to go to those ships thousands supposed to go on that ship. They supposed to, I don't know, drown 'em, eliminate 'em, or to different camps, nobody knows 'til today. And my brother was with the other brother and they were counting fives in the line and he was standing as a sixth. So, they grabbed him and they kicked him--this brother what he's alive--and sent him all the way to the end. And this brother, the youngest, he was going on that ship and then a half an hour later, English planes--my brother saw it, with that ship is burning. They were bombing. They thought this is uh, Germans, you know. They didn't know this is a refugee camp. They came--later they came down, the pilots and crying. But it was too late already. The damage was done. All the Germans managed, when they were bombing, they were under the boats, little boats, whatever they could, they run away. And this ship they came down low, was no flag, nothing. And they bombed it, and the whole ship blowed up and my youngest brother was in that, in that, that ship. So, you can imagine how this brother--this brother, him you couldn't interview. No way. I can't even talk with him. A lot of times, you know, we get together in the holidays I can't talk. He doesn't want to--he starts to cry and he get hysterical. He can't talk about the war at all. Sometimes I want to ask him, you know, if he knew this guy and this guy. He says, he says, "Sy, don't, don't mention. I don't want to, I don't want to know." He can't talk about it. Because he saw it, how my, the, the other brother got uh, killed. It was two hours. Two hours before they were liberated. And on the way, this brother--see, the other brother got all of a sudden, he was weak, he couldn't even walk. And he talked him out, he says, you'll see. It's not going to take long. We--see what they bombing and they machine guns and, you know, and airplanes. He said, it's going to be the end, so keep up. So, he hold him. He hold him under the arm and almost dragged him, you know. And he pulled him there. And uh, if it's not, wasn't ??? it looks like, you know. And he went in, in that ship and this brother got liberated two hours later from the English troops. So, the Eng...English did it, but it's not English fault.

It's not your brother's fault either.

No, so that's...

© Board of Regents University of Michigan-Dearborn