Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Sam Seltzer - November 29, 1982



He says, "I don't care what you do. But you gotta build up your muscles." So painfully, with the spasms and everything, at night I could...couldn't sleep. He, he, he, he put me into a villa. They had villas. There was a German, wasn't there, so he gave me--they gave me a villa and I played for them. It was mostly Hungarian Jews and Polish Jews. And they gave me a villa and I played. For a while I was in the hospital, already they said uh, finishing off the two years, close to two years. And they were in the B class, see? While I was playing for them, we made the uh, master in the A class. We beat the B class and we made master in the A class. And uh, we came up to the upper league. We made the upper league. Now in the upper league you played already in, like in Munich. I played in Munich, yeah. And I was picked two years all-star in Munich. Then uh, we had uh, a team from the Joint the Jewish uh, organization...

Oh yeah, uh-huh.

...the Joint. And the Joint had the best team, all-star team. And we, I was picked as, not as a goalie, but I picked, I was picked as a half-right. A forward. And I was play--we played the American zone against the English zone. And at that time we lost one to nothing and I got a medal for it, for playing soccer. And uh, I was so good when the Germans saw me playing at the training they--like Wednesdays, we trained--they came over, they kept--another team came over and he says uh, in Wahlheim yeah, he says--they called me Felix there. Yeah. "Felix would you want to play for us? We need uh, we need somebody on half-right now, forward. I know you, the way you handle the ball I can, I can tell you're going, you can play." I said, "But I'm a goalie. I play for the Jewish team in Saturday." But he says, "Oh, don't you want to play for us on Sunday? I'll pay you," he says. "I'll give you, what do you want?" So I told him, "I want, I want a..."--I used to live there in a bad place you know, in a hotel. Used to be a lot of rats. So I said, "I want to get out of this hotel and I want to go to this hotel, how's that? Do you know the man?" "Oh yeah, sure I know him." He says, "I'll go talk to him." So he gave me another, he gave me another hotel. See, I live in another hotel. But I didn't live anymore in the villa.


I lived for a while there. That was a little while later, you know. So I played...

Did your brother ever join you?


Your brother.

...yeah, yeah. Then my brother meantime was in the hospital. There were uh, you know, cleaning uh, his stomach and so forth. Gave him, I don't know what they healed him with, Maalox or whatever they... And I brought my brother over to Wahlheim. I made him a you know, like a passport to Wahlheim. And they were checking me out very good. I had to name the uh, sisters and all my brothers and the kids, my sisters. And he did too, so they knew he was my brother. They didn't believe me, see? They thought that I wanted just somebody else, you know. But I said, "No he is my brother." Because my brother looked a little different than I do--I did, see? I mean, I, I was different. My brother was skinny, very skinny. I was husky and--I, they just believed us and they made him a passport there. And he lived in this town, in Wahlheim. And...

How long did you stay there?


In Wahlheim.

In Wahlheim I was uh, 'til 1951.

© Board of Regents University of Michigan-Dearborn