Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Alexander Ehrmann - May 13, 1983


In the few minutes that are remaining, is there anything else you'd like to add?

Well uh, I never had really the feeling that I'm glad that I survived. Often I've asked myself uh, why was I picked to survive, why not my brother, okay not my parents, but why not my brother? Why not my sister? Why did she have to hold onto that child? As much as I loved that child, I really did. When the kids came, I could not get myself to be glad, of course I was glad, it was my flesh and blood, when I was getting married, I was glad that I am getting married, I found somebody who is, I consider suitable for sharing my life with. It wasn't until the last few years, and I'm very sorry for it, I know that I've hurt my children, I know that I've deprived my wife of experiences of, of really being able to share, but it's now starting to, to develop in me that gratitude that I, I made it back, including my gratitude to the United States for liberating, as much as uh, misgivings as I may have for not doing enough and not doing enough in time and, and so on and so forth, but there is--I'm conscious of the gratitude to the United States and to the Allied forces and to Canada for finding a homeland there. I have the desire to go out and teach and tell my story to people who, who don't know, so that future happenings can be, can be avoided. I believe that can be done, whereas before I used to say, I don't want to talk about it because you don't understand it anyways. You don't know, you can't relate to my experiences, it's only mine, private, I can relate to it. Maybe another fellow survivor, but you wouldn't dare, you don't know what it is. You gonna look at me like crazy, I'm telling you stories uh, that is unbelievable and you, you think I made it up, just like I made up, just like the attitude I took when our friend came home from Lublin and we said he exaggerated, that was my attitude before. Now, I want to go out and share my experiences to others, so that they can learn from it, so that I can teach and this is why I'm involved in the Holocaust movement, this is why I'm involved in going out and talking to classes. I want to give, give of myself and maybe through this interaction I'll be able to reach out and connect to my own children and to my wife. I was not able to work that out yet.

You connected today, thank you.

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