Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Rene Lichtman - August 13, 1998

Other Children in Hiding

These other children that appeared on occasion in the, in the Lepage's home, do think they were Jewish children?

I have no idea. I have no idea. I read--I met a few years ago a guy, I went to one of these national conferences and uh, they sat me down at a table with French people. And the guy next to me says, "Where, where were you hidden?" And I hadn't thought, I never thought about that town, hiding, I mean, I didn't, didn't think about those things too much. He says, "Where were you?" I said, "I was outside of Paris." He says, "Well, where?" I said, "Well, a little town." He says, "What's the name?" I said, "Le Vert Galant." He says, "Oh, okay." He goes outside, comes back with book full of documents-- stuff. He turns to a page and there it was, Le Vert Galant, where he too had been in hiding. Yeah, Jack Fine, who just called me two nights ago. And uh, except, so I started to say, I said, well, look, I want to know, was there a round up at the school? Because I, I had heard, I think that's one of the reasons I was told that I couldn't go to any kind of school, because they were rounding up the Jewish kids there. And he said he didn't, didn't know, because he was one of those kids that kind of went through. And he didn't remember too much about his stay at Le Vert Galant. But, you know, I'm sure, it was so close to Paris, it was an ideal place for other Jewish kids to be there, including in the schools and including in the roundup. That's why I've always been curious about finding out from the schools, you know, finding out the history of that town. I mean, I'm very, I'd be very interested to find out the...

Do you think the Resistance was involved in this?

Uh, well my, my, my father's uh, let's see, my, my, my guardian's nephew, I think, was in the resistance, yeah. He was a--they, they said he was a communist, you know.

Yeah. When did you find out about your father?

That my father was dead?


You know, I don't know how that stuff happens. You know, it's like um, you know, your real father is dead. Well, I think when I went back to my mother um, you know, I found out uh, that um, that she was my real mother and, and that my father was actually missing in combat. Uh, and um...

So it was after the war?

So it was, so actually, for another two or three years, we were hoping that he would come back, because uh, their, the definition of missing in, in action, missing in combat is seven years, something to that effect. So they were, the French government was waiting for seven years before they actually pronounced him dead. But I, I heard, you know, they have records of his unit and evidently, his unit was blown up. Um, I found this out later uh, it was blown up outside of Paris as the Germans were coming in. And they were crossing this bridge at night and they were, the bridge was blown up.

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