Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Louis Kaye - May 9, 1983

Fate of Family

Did you hear about your family at all while you were in any of the camps?

Yeah, I heard about the family. Somebody told me the city was liquidated, they took them to Treblinka. I hear. How they, killed by the family and everything.

So, you knew.

Yeah, I knew already in 1943 I have no family. Because they did the same thing in, in Skarzysk. I knew they took them to Treblinka because you always find one person or two run away somewhere, he knew what's going on. I knew my family got killed and everything. Not killed, they gas, gas 'em. First they put gas in then they put 'em in the crematorium. They kill 'em. Yeah.

When you heard that, how, how did you feel that you wanted to go on?

Like I say, everything was hard, like a piece of stone. The same thing was going out in concentration camp. Go back to Poland, you go back everything. If I wanted to cry, I could not cry that time.

You couldn't cry.

No. I couldn't cry for a long time. It just start. When it get me to cry and everything when I making party for my family, for my kids, each party.

Here, here you cry.

Yeah, right. I could not cry. I mean, it was like a piece of stone. Though I usually cried that time when come over here make a nice living and everything. Then I forget, why I'm better than them? I used to go to psychiatrist doctors for years. Dr. Krystal and other places. One time I was going to Southwestern Hospital. I put me in a hospital myself when I was feeling those. Then I run away from the hospital and everything. So, it took off. At each party I could not take the parties. Not because, I... One way I was happy, one way I was unhappy. I figure I'm here making party, the kids are here, a bar mitzvah, a wedding and everything. Where my family? Why I'm better than them? It took me years and years. Each party was a crying. And my kids suffered plenty because of me though, they really do. It's hard to understand. If sometimes the more I'm talking, I feel better, no. Like I say before I built the monument, before I built the stones, it was on Yom Kippur, it was like a, I couldn't go to the uh, the shul, I couldn't do nothing. I was sick, the... each hour of the day I was sick. Up to a certain year and trying to fight myself, each hour day. Come Pesach, come each hour day, I used to have pictures in my, in my office I used to have pictures from, about pictures from the Holocaust in New York 1960 and '65 from Buchenwald and other place. And I used to have two pictures hanging, one in my room with, with lights twenty-four hours around the clock for eight years, three years. One time my son come to me, he say, if you don't take off, he don't talk to me. So, it is against my will, I took everything apart. I wish they could understand. You know what I mean. If he didn't say, if you do this I don't talk to you. Or... It was wrong. I took it off. I was fed up that now I'm taking... I couldn't understand why I did it, why I listened to him. I wish I had it still over here today.

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