Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

John Mandel - May 26, 1981


What has America meant to you?

Oh, I, I appreciate America very much. I, uh... [

Wife: He says Americans don't appreciate America.]


That, that, that is uh, true. Americans unfortunately don't know--people born here don't realize what they have. Uh, I'm not trying to tell you that, that our country is perfect, because it certainly is not. But it's a lot better than anything else I've seen any place else. So, I do appreciate very much.

What does Israel mean to you?

It means a great deal to me. I am a very strong supporter for Israel. Uh, it uh, certainly uh, is on parallel with, with the way I feel about America, definitely.

How has your experience influenced your religion?

I uh, am sorry to say, in my own case I became l...less religious that I was when I was younger. I uh, don't know why. Um, we are, of course, Conservative, uh. And uh, we have a paradox in our family. We have a little bit of everything in our family. We have uh, two of our daughters are Orthodox and uh, my wife and I are Conservative, and two of our other children probably are Reform. So we have a little bit of everything.

Good mixture. Is there anything else you'd like to add?

Not really, uh. I, I, I wish that uh, I wouldn't have to sit here and, and uh, and recant this, this whole happening. But uh, unfortunately it did happen and uh, and since it did happen to me, I'm, I'm glad that I had this opportunity to share it with some other people and really don't--can't think of anything else I'd like to add to the...

Do you have any special hopes for your children's future?

Only that they be uh, happy and healthy. The rest will take care of itself.

I think this is a good place to end it.

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