Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Sigmund Rubin - January 12, 1982


The ghetto was constantly watched by Germans with vicious dogs, you couldn't get out. There was no, there, there was no way to get out. We were there about three weeks. After three weeks we were ordered to get out of the homes and formed in columns and they took us to the railroad station. They packed us in freight trains. And when we got there we could see that that was the end of us, of us. Because on the way who was not in a position to walk, they killed them right on the spot. Our--we thought and we were told, they are taking us to a concentration camp, we will work there and uh, we'll stay there 'til the end of the war. But when we got into those railroad uh, uh, uh, cars, we could see that that was the end. They packed us in like sardines. We couldn't move, we couldn't breathe. The train started off and we were close to the window. We decided to jump because we saw that this is the end of our lives. We had no chance to survive. So people started to get close to the window. When people got start uh, started to get close to the window, my older brother had a nail clip in his pocket and the windows were barbed, with barbed wires. So we decided to cut the barbed wires and jump. I asked the people that when we'll jump not to interfere, in order not to interfere with our jumping because the train was moving quite fast and we wanted to be together, we didn't want to lose ourselves. But for some reason my two younger brothers jumped. When it got to me, somebody got in my way and I jumped about, about two, three minutes later. Two, three minutes later was a big distance in the spacing. And when I jumped I uh, tried to find my brothers. I walked about a couple of miles and I didn't find anybody. Finally I notice some snow tracks into a forest. And I got into that forest with the intention that my brothers got in there. I circled around that forest for about two days and two nights. I couldn't find my way out. I found out later that those were the biggest forest in that area--Kaniów--whoever is from that uh, area knows what it is. On the second day I noticed some light at night and I walked towards the light. I got into that, closer to the light. I came into a farmer and I told him that I'm lost. I asked him for my way, for the way out. And he told me he's going to work in the morning if I would like to, he'll show me the way. I got so disgusted that I decided to walk with the highway because I was so miserable, so disappointed I didn't find my brothers. And I decided to walk the highways.

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