Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Vera Gissing - April 22, 2006

Extended Family

You said your mother had an office. What did she do?

Um, well, my father had a distant relative who manufactured wines and spirits and, and uh, mother ran the office side of it.

And you, you also said there were six children. So you had five aunts and uncles?

Excuse me?

I thought I heard you say that your grandparents had six...

Oh, my grandparents, oh yes uh, yes I had uh, but two of them died of natural causes. And then uh, but I had an aunt--aunt Berta, who was my mother's younger sister and she was a spinster. And uh, she couldn't get over me being such a terrible ragamuffin and always getting into scrapes. And um, then there was a brother of my mother's who was still alive and uh, he had a lovely wife, Marta, and uh, two young boys, who were roughly the same age as, as my sister as I, except that both of them were a year younger than my sister, and I--Hunter and Tommy. And uh, we used to see them more or less every week. Every time we came to Prague, they--and we were very close family.

So this is from your mother's side.

Yes, and my father also had two sisters, and they had a family. And they were much richer than my uh, mother's uh, mother's uh, relatives. But um, but they were also very nice and uh, we often went on--skiing together, you know, into the mountains and so on.

And they also lived nearby.

They also lived in Prague.

How many people--up--first cousin, aunts, uncles, grandparents--how many people do you think there were in your family?

I would think about sixteen at least, I would...

And how many survived the war?


Three. You and your sister and...

Well, I'm not counting my sister...


Because I was thinking "survive..."

The others, yeah.

...it means uh, going through the Holocaust. We were lucky enough not to...

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