Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Esther Feldman Icikson - October 23 & 29, November 5 & 12, 2001



Okay. And it's made from tin and it, it had two or three rooms inside and had a bathroom. It had a little kitchen and they had a chicken coop in the back. I mean they were already kind of settled. Their older children were in the kibbutz, Mayer, Pinhaus and Miriam were in a kibbutz. They had Rivka, Esther and Gila, three more children at home.

How old were they?

Rivka was born in Siberia in '41, I think. Esther--no Gila was born in Russia in '43. And Esther was born in Italy actually. So uh, uh, the one that was born in Italy was a little girl. Maybe this is now '48, she must have been two years old. Uh, Gila was five and Rivka was maybe seven, something like that. The older ones were in a kibbutz. In Kibbutz Rannana I think.

So what were you feeling about all this now?

Very confusing, very confusing. Very exciting because here you see your family again. Uh, you're in Israel. It's tough, excuse me. You need to learn a new language. I knew a little bit, but very little. And uh, you don't know where you're going to go, but it doesn't matter. You, you're with your family and it's Friday and it's very exciting. My aunt cooked delicious food and we were for Shabbat and it wa...together and it was very nice. And uh, we spent a few days with them and we went back to the camp, to the absorption camp. And they were still bombarding actually, they were still bombarding Tel Aviv and uh, the war was still going on.

It's '49 still.

Uh, it's already '49 now, it's maybe January '49. And uh, finally it's, it's a cease fire. And uh, it was very tough in that absorption camp. Uh, we, we spent a little time with our family, and um.

Did you see your brother?

I don't remember. We did, yes. He came, actually he came for that weekend because he uh, asked for a pass because his family came from abroad and they allowed him to go home. And uh, he was involved in, in the fight in Batrun. He was, uh...

So he showed up in a uniform.

Yes, he was a soldier. Looked handsome, with a, with a, a rifle. And we were very excited to see him alive. It was a wonderful weekend. Uh, my cousins were soldiers too. Everybody was very involved in the war.

They didn't draft your father.

No, he was too old. And so um, when the war was over... They were still bombarding Tel Aviv when we got there and uh, in '49 I don't remember, I think it was in February maybe, I'm not sure uh.

It was over.

The war was over.

So you were hearing bombs falling.

Oh yeah! Oh yes, oh yes. There were still, ??? which means uh, uh, alarms to hide, you know. There' a name for it in English. I can't think of it. You know where they put on the...


...sirens, yeah. And you hide, you run out and you hide uh, uh. Yes, it was still war. Uh, and after that uh, when they proclaimed the cease fire and the war was over, the absorption camp uh, leaders assigned us to go--to move to a city uh, that was conquered by the Israeli soldiers and the name of the city is Lut. It's near the airport.

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