Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

David Kahan - April 29, 1982

Reunited with Brother

Did you, did you meet with him?

Uh, no. I met my brother Ephraim in Israel in 1962, when he immigrated from Romania to Israel.

So he, he stayed in Romania after the war?

He stayed in Romania, yes. He was liberated by the Russian army from the uh, in the labor battalions, sometimes in '94--1944, I think it was in the fall of 1944 or late summer and then he came back to my hometown. He was one of the first Jews uh, he was one of the first Jews to arrive back to hometown and then he welcomed the other Jews who survived and returned to our hometown.

And when did he move to Israel?

He moved to Israel in 1962. And immediately as he arrived to Israel, immediately he had that dream of a lifetime, that fantastic trip to go to Israel. When I met my brother and...

The first time you'd seen him since...

The first time I'd seen him since 1942. That was twenty years. And then I met the survivors of my hometown, about uh, fifty people who survived. And uh, then I realized uh, the importance of the State of Israel and, and that uh, there was a place for the Jews to go to. I think that was one of the really greatest tragedies of the Jewish people, that we had no country to go to while they still had a chance to leave Europe. It was an unforget...getable experience for me. I spent three days there. I met my brother and there was a meeting of, of the people from my hometown. They have a yearly meeting and everyone who survive was there. It, it's an unforgettable experience. I saw all the people that I hadn't seen in uh, in twenty years.

Quite a reunion.

It was quite a reunion, yes, yeah.

When was your brother killed then?

My um, brother who was old, two years older than I was, he immediately after the war joined a group of Jews in Europe and organized into the underground Haganah, the fighting force. He was trained in Yugoslavia. In Yugoslavia. He arrived in Israel in 1948 and uh, he immediately went to the front lines and unfortunately he was um, killed, from what I hear that his, his uh, troop was ambushed by the Syrians and they were all killed. But not only killed, they were decapitated, they were cut up to such small pieces that they don't know, they couldn't recognize them. They were buried in a mass grave. My brother had tried to find where he is buried, but uh, they just weren't able to uh, find the remains.

Now which brother did you meet in '62 then?

My, Ephraim, my second oldest brother.

And the one who was killed in '48?

It was immediately older than I am, two years older than I am.

I see.

Mei...Meir Josef, yes. He died in Israel in the War of Liberation.

I see. All right. So you had four brothers...

I had three brothers who survived. I had four brothers...


Five, five brothers altogether. No, four brothers and a sister, yes. Four brothers, four of 'em. One of 'em perished in the Ukraine, Ephraim survived and is in Israel and the next one died in 1948, with a battle of Israel and I...

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