Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Lola Taubman - December 22, 2009


Well, tell me about liberation before we get to the DP camp.

Before the DP camp.


Uh, well, it was traumatic and, and disappointing because we were liberated when the Ger...when the Americans and the Russians met. So some of those who, who met the Americans earlier, they got food and they got chocolate and they got sardines and they got sick and died. And uh, we were left just without anybody. Not Germans. We were in a village and if we went to a, to a farm they locked the gates. They wouldn't give us any. Then we met some Yugoslavs, and they said, "Come with us, we'll get you food." And they didn't care, they knocked the gate down and went in. See the German farmers were afraid that we were Russians and we're going to rape them and we're going to take everything away, which they did, they did.

You don't look the type.

Yeah. You know, two, two girls from--one from my class and one from my home town, they were raped and they were killed. It's not enough to rape, but they killed them. So when we were on our own. We were hiding in--on a farm in a hayloft and we tried to be so quiet because the Russians were marching through and we didn't know what they were going to do to us. And uh, then other Yugoslavs said, "Come, we take you," and they got us some bicycles. And I never knew how to ride a bicycle, and my cousin said to me, "Just get on it and, and, and pedal." And I did. I said, "What do I do if a car comes?" "Just keep on going." But after two or three miles the Russians came and took the bicycle away and put it on their wagon to ship to Russia. And we slept in bombed out houses in the basement. And before that I never heard a bird in Auschwitz until I was in that bombed out house. And, and one girl from our hometown she had a good voice she tried to sing. We had nothing to cover ourselves, no food. Then they took us--somebody took us to a school and they was straw on the floor, to sleep on the straw. And we still--people were injured, they had sores. Nobody to take care of us. Then somehow we went into a, an empty house and we slept there. The--I guess the Germans ran away and the furniture was still there, the bedding was still there and uh, uh, one day a, a Czech officer came and he was looking for some relatives. Couldn't find any, but he says, "Don't worry, I'll take care of you." And he sent a bus to Prague and everybody jumped on that bus, whether they were Romanian or Polish or Czech and we came to Prague. That's when I found out that my uncles to...you know, in the big square, men were standing there who came from slave labor and they were looking for relatives and they mentioned that two of my uncles were alive. And my aunt was with us--he was the youngest brother of my father's--Louis the XIV, because he was the fourteenth child and my father was in the middle of the eleven children.

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