Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Jack Gun - August 12, 1999

DP Camp

You wound up in a DP camp.

Eventually, yes.

How did that happen and were you thawing out then?

Well, let me give you a few incidents before that. Uh, after we came back from Rovno, after Rozhishche was liberated again uh, came back again to our house, our house was still empty. Uh, the first thing happened that uh, uh, my brother got very sick with typhoid fever. Finally caught up with us and he had to be taken to a hospital. There were no normal hosp...there were no regular hospitals. He was taken to a Army hospital. Then when I was, I used to come to visit him uh, he looked like a, like a skeleton. Just like when you see some pictures of these concentration camp survivors. That's what he looked like. And uh, when it was time for him to come home uh, the Russians decided that uh, young people like that we need in the service. The war was still going on. So, I, I uh, being ten years old, I was his savior then. I went and spoke to a lady uh, that wa...had a Br...she was an off...she was a lieutenant or a captain, she had quite a big rank. And she happened to have been Jewish. And I went to her and I told her, I says, "Look, I says, I'm all alone, I lost my parents, I have nobody." I says, "How can you take him away from me?" And by a miracle, sh...they let him out.

You spoke Yiddish to her?

I spoke, I spoke a little bit of Russian, without having any school. Spoke a little Polish, spoke a little Russian. Just from picking up from hearing.

Let me go back for just a second. You didn't, you didn't contract typhus, is that right?

Yes, I did also, after him. After him I contracted typhus and was very ill. And this also I remember very clearly. And I was very much afraid of being taken to, you know, like to a hospital or to, to any kind of institution. So uh, I remember a doctor came and checked me and said that I have to go to a--and I was crying. That's the only time I remember actually really crying. Crying and kicking and I said I will not go anywheres. And they left me alone. They left me in a house. They gave me some kind of medication, they gave me some kind of injection, I don't know what. But it took a week or ten days and I revived and never went to the hospital.

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