Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Lola Taubman - December 22, 2009

Death March

And the others who were, who were the uh, secretaries to the officer, I didn't know, know anything--if they survived or not. There were so many things happening. When we went on a death march uh, that was the second one, we had to stop in football fields because they needed the roads, the roads for the military. So there were some gypsies with us and a, a horse died, so they butchered it and they gave us some horsemeat and I wouldn't eat it, so I, I, I bartered with the, with the gypsy. She gave me rice, because one of the, the wagons that, that broke when the horse died, the, the uh, sack tore open. So they gave us some rice. So she gave me, gave me rice and I gave her the horse meat. And uh, we stayed there a little while, so we gathered some twigs, tried to make a fire. I had a, a, a can attached with a string around my waste. And we--somebody had a match, so we tried to water--we cooked, tried to cook grass with, with rice. And when it was about to boil the whistle blew, we had to go on.

So you didn't eat.

But I didn't eat. And there was another, another time uh, when we were the second death march outside of Leipzig. Uh, they again, they ended the roads. So we lied down in the--what do they call it?

Daughter: The ditch?

Ditch also, also along the road. And we were half asleep and a tank came and rolled down some of the girls. Some of the girls were injured. So one of the girls that was injured was--first of all a girl I knew got killed there and the other girl was injured. She was lucky, she had a high boot that kept her leg together. And we had some potatoes, so we took turns scraping raw potatoes and giving it to her mouth that she should live.

Did she live?

Yes, she's in, in uh, Netanya in Israel. Her name is ???. There's a big, big ??? family in, in Svalava.

What was it like for you coming from a family like yours...


...to suddenly be in the middle of all this death and suffering?

It didn't seem real. It seemed like a dream, like, like part of--it wasn't part of us. It was somebody else than me walking there and, and girls were stealing boots of the dead girls. I mean, people turned into animals.

Did they steal from each other?

Yes. I mean, they stole the foot of the shoe of the dead people.

Did they steal the tin cups? The cups that you had?

No, but there's another story with that cup too. When we were in Ravensbrück. We only stayed there two weeks and uh, we were told that a, a classmate of mine and her mother were there. So we went to visit them and they didn't know me or the other girls and we didn't recognize them. They died right there. There were, there were corpses all over the place. And uh, about the cup, I was standing in line to get some, some soup and finally I got some soup and when I turned around a Ukrainian girl knocked it out of my h...hands. There, there was anti-Semitism everywhere.

This was another prisoner.

Yes, oh the most horrible--worse than Auschwitz. We could never--in Auschwitz you didn't see dead bodies all over, not where I was. Maybe they, they were dying in other camps and in other parts of Auschwitz. And uh, originally Ravensbrück started as a women's camp and they were making uh, uniforms for the soldiers. But then they built a, a crematorium and they were killing people there.

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