Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Adele Sandel - [n.d.]

Life in the Brdšrka Bunker

Were the Germans now occupying this village at this time? Were the Germans now occupying the village?



Now? Now?

Yeah, while you were in the bunker?

While we were in the bunker, of course.

Of course.

Yes, they were in the village.

And they never saw these people go in and out, things like that?

So, you tell me if that wasn't a miracle.

It has to be a miracle.

If we were meant to live. Wait, the biggest miracle. Listen to this. We were there lying around. We were even laughing and singing. What do you do for three, three-and-a-half months in a bunker? There was no electricity. You couldn't even sit up. You had to lay flat.

About how far was it from the village? Do you know?

About um, about uh, an hour and a half walk...


...up in the woods.


We were telling all the stories, you know, what who was and on that little stove we were melting snow and we had a little pot and that's how we were washing. And uh, we went--there was also a little uh, stream or a little uh, I don't even know, a little river or something and this boy brought up a, a um, ax--I don't know how you call it--and we made a hole in that ice and that's how we had a little water. You know?


You had to wash. I mean you had to do things. I mean, a human being for three months couldn't live without water.


So, and even there around this bunker, thirteen people. You are human. You have to do things, you know. How that happened? People with those Germans. These patrols were constantly going in, in those woods. This was once--those uh, partisan, you know he came uh, away from the army, you know, he was fighting for the Russians and he ran away from the army.

A deserter.

A deserter and he came into our bunker. He found the bunker and he came and he was the one who told us. He was the fourth human being who told us after this, this blond boy I told you, he, he told us what was going on with the Jews in Auschwitz. We still didn't believe it.


We still didn't believe it. So, a day was long like a year. What could I tell you? You couldn't read. You couldn't do nothing. You just--everybody told a story and then you--the whole bunker wasn't, wasn't, was half of this room here. You couldn't turn around without disturbing the other person to ask permission to turn around because that, uh, we were like, you know, like the feet were here and the body was there. I can't even--the whole thing was maybe like from over there to here.

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