Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Martin Koby - April 20, 1999

News of the war

All right. Before the a war and during the war, did, did you have a radio?

No, we never had a radio. There was only two people in the whole village that had a radio. The Greek Orthodox Church, you know they have a, a priest and a deacon, they call them you know, like a...

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

...the chazzen you know, the, the guy that prays, that does the praying. His son, his son had a radio. But the--you had to take you know, it was uh, you had ear muffs and you--ear...earphones.


And you had to take this--the battery to the city to have it recharged every so often.

Well, what I'm, what I'm curious about is whether you heard any news from Germany during the '30s.

No, not that I know of.

You never heard of Hitler?

I found out later was uh, I find out, yes.

Later, but, but so when, when, uh...

I don't know what my parents--you know, how much they heard.

They never talked about it at home?

They used to. But when they talked, I had to leave the room.

And when all of a sudden these um, Jews from, from Poland came, what did you, what did you...

What did uh, what did we do?

Well, what did you think?

Who, me personally? I don't know. These people have no home. You see, the center of life was in the city, in Rovno, which was fourteen kilometers from Giuszwica.

Forty kilometers?



You could walk it there and back in one day.

So it's what, uh...

Fourteen divided by what--multiplied to seven and a half--eight miles.

Seven, okay.

That's a long distance.


I have a, a f...friend, our next-door neighbor, Olga, she was next door. And she says, you know--I started to correspond with her. After Gorbachev, after Perestroika, you could write...


...letters. And she said, "This is the first time in my life that I've been more than fifteen kilometers away from my house." Because she went to the Ural Mountains to visit her son. She said, "First time in my life." And she had to be uh, six...somewheres in her early sixties.

She was in her early sixties. Okay.

That's the Ukrainian lady.


So the--that's...

You still communicate with her?

Oh, yeah.

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