Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Simon Kalmas - May 25, 1982

Deciding to Stay in Poland

Did your family have any options? Was there anything they could have done once the Germans came in? No.

Not a thing.

So you came home after that...


...and, uh...

...and I remained with the family.

And everybody was together.

Yep. Until 1942--that was the final.

Now before that, let me ask you what--you stayed there at the house then uh, with your...

Yeah, with my, with my family.

Did you...

A lot of people, a lot of people--you see, the Russians came in from one side, the Germans came in from the other. So a lot of people packed up and ran to the Russians. And uh, you know, to Lublin. I uh, just didn't have the heart to leave the family somehow. I, I knew that there's nothing much that I can do for them, but at least whatever I can, I'll do with food--earn a living. And uh, so I--my, my friends asked me to go with them. "You see what's going on, don't stay here." And they went. Some of them died over there.

The Russian side.

The Russian side. One came back without a leg. So I just took my chances. I said, "Whatever will happen, will happen. I'm not going to leave my mom and dad and they won't know what happened to me." We were together 'til about--I believe it was November '42.

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