Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Helen Lang - February 23, 1982

Discovering Fate of Family

Were you wondering about your mother?

Yes. You see, my sister's husband brother lived in Slovakia and those Slovak people they took us away, I think, in '40. And all of a sudden we heard that my sister's sister-in-law is there. ??? was her name--is her name. I don't know the last name. But when we, we heard that--so my sister says to me, she says, "It would be good that, you know, we should let know that ??? that we are here." Big deal. So I think she sent a message with one of those Stuben ältestes, you know, they called them, you know, those, not Kapo, I mean, they weren't mean, you know.


They were all from Slovakia and my sister says is there a ???--I forgot her last name. And she says, "Oh yeah." She says, will you please tell her--we couldn't go anyplace--tell her that her sister-in-law is here. So one day ??? arrives--her sister. It was maybe after the third day. We still didn't know what was going on. And, and she says--and, well, she brought some toothpaste for uh, you know, toothbrush. We didn't have that. So she says, "Tell me when I will be able to go and see my baby, you know, he went with my mother." She says, "You're crazy?" She says, "Your mother and your baby is all uh, out in the smoke already." She says, "What you think that smell?" You know, that was a horrible smell. We smelled it there. She says, "Why you think that smell is here? That's the bones--the people--they're burning here the people." When my sister heard that, she just wanted to go to the fence. You know the fence was electric.


And she says, "I don't want to live anymore, I want to die. I want to go to the fence. It's no use for me to live more. My baby is dead, and, they killed my baby." And I had a such a tough time with my sister. I said, "Tell me, are you going to help?" I start to talk to her. I says, "You gonna help your baby that you're going to be dead too? What can you do? Let's see what's going to happen." "No, no, I want to die, I don't want to live." And ah, she gave me such a rough time. In the meantime, I was drinking that water there, I was always thirsty somehow. I start to drink that water and I got sick.

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