Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Helen Lang - February 23, 1982


Um, in Czechoslovakia--in Munkacs, you said it was a predominantly...


...a Jewish city. But uh, from the Gentile population, do you remember any anti-Semitic incidents with--before the war--before '38?

I don't remember, I'll tell you that, I don't remember that it was anything, you know. I mean, I'm sure there were. You know, there was always an account that they, they don't like the Jews, I'm sure. But I never got in contact with that.

Your family either?

No, my family didn't get in contact with it. As long as they were neighbors, you know. You know, there was neighbors, you know, that they weren't Jewish and, you know, they behaved themselves, you know, nice.

Okay, so now then, before the war you were going to school...


...um, if, if the Hungarians had not come in 1938, what kind of plans would you have had for the future? If there had been--what were you thinking of doing in the next uh, ten years, say?

Never thought of it. Would you believe it? I, I never thought of it.

And your brothers, would they have taken over the business?

Well, they weren't in the business. No, they were separate. Like my brother, he was a sailor's man--my oldest brother. And my other brother he worked in a, in a store--oh, how should I say--like a hardware store. He liked that.

Did anybody want to go to Israel?

To Palestine at that time? I know my uncle. He was living for that...


...that one day he...he'll be able to go with his family. Well, we were--I tell you, how it was by us. I don't think my mother would want to go any place, because she had her parents. They lived like in next house, you know? I remember my father used to say when we were small that--you see, he had here a sister and a brother in America. And he says that he always wanted, right after they got married with my mother that they wanted to--he wanted to come to America very badly. And my mother says, "I don't want to go no place. I don't want to leave my parents." So by us, it was like this. My mother was a very devoted daughter to her parents. There wasn't a day that she didn't go and see. They were older people already. "I want to go see my, my father and my mother." That was her first stop before she went to business. Always going to see if they're all right. So by us, there was never even thought of it that to, to leave because of that.

© Board of Regents University of Michigan-Dearborn