Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Tola Gilbert - July 25, 1983

Liberation II

And I came in and I said, "What's, what's happening, what's happening?" And my sister says to me, "The, the Allies are coming." And we were debating, who is coming. Americans. Let the Americans come, they will give us food and let the Russians come too from the other side, they will take advantage of the Russian--of the Germans. This we knew. I don't know how and don't ask me. And it was true. The Americans didn't do anything. They gave us food, yes. As it happened, I didn't see Americans, I saw the Russians. And we were liberated. Two motorcycles came in and they were shocked with what they saw. And right away the comman...commandant of the uh, Russians came in and they told us to sit quietly and we will get uh, food and this and that. We never got from them food. Lucky for us we had the Englishmen there from New Zealand and from South Africa and they took over the camp. In what way did they take over the camp? For instance, they saved many, many of our lives. We had that we never in our being in the camps so suddenly we saw bacon and everybody wanted bacon. You know what they did? They took the whole bacon and burned it. Lucky for us. Would we have eaten that bacon, we would die, because many people after the liberation died from eating food that they were not used to. And they took over. So they went to the farmers and they would kill a lamb or a calf, so we had some meat. They would collect eggs and bread and this and that from the farmers and they would bring to our camp. And in the meantime men were coming to our camp from other camps, here a sister and this one has a loved one, or this one has a cousin or a friend or this, and the girls started to move out from the camp. But still, my sisters and I were still--were sitting here not knowing where to go, only one way--we want to go home and the many others with us.

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