Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Lola Taubman - December 22, 2009

Life After Liberation

Now how did you wind up in Czechoslovakia?

They sent a bus.

So you came from Germany to Czechoslovakia.

Yes, yes, yes. And because my uncle was in the uh, Czech army in, in, uh...

Daughter: They were, they were in Siberia.



Daughter: He was in Siberia then they brought them back

No, no, I mean the Czech army in...

Daughter: In exile.


Daughter: In exile.

In exile, that's the word I was looking for. So he had an apartment of the Germans that fled Prague. And uh, the aunt was elated to find...

Daughter: Let's clarify. So they were married before the war, in '42.

They were married in '42, they were married six months and they took him to slave labor and eventually Siberia.

Daughter: And she was in Auschwitz with my mother through this whole ordeal, they were still side by side.

Your aunt...

Daughter: Her aunt by marriage...

Yeah, yeah.

Daughter: ...and the husband was away for two years...

Away in Siberia.

Daughter: ...and then they were serendipitously reunited in Prague because they got on this bus and ended up in the town square. And someone recognized the aunt and after being separated for two and a half years, this married couple, not knowing that the other had survived...


Daughter: ...found each other.

...and food was hard to get in Prague, so the only meat we had was--because also a cousin--it turned to be a cousin later on--the two officers got uh, rabbits and they killed it and, and the rabbits--the apartment was like in an O shape with the courtyard in the middle. And when you looked out, everybody had a, a rabbit hanging in the window. And she cooked whoever arrived, including my teacher. We slept on the floor. They fed us and uh, uh, so then because they had--he, he had brothers here, my father's brothers--the three Ameri...we had three--the oldest brothers came to the United States shortly after the end of the century to make room for the other children. And uh, uh, so he had privilege to come to United States because he had a brother. So he--they--I left Prague before they did because we found out that the communists are very active. And I got a call from Teplitz, my other uncle lived, and cousins there, they said, "We're going back to Germany if you want to join us, board the train immediately." And I did. We were on the Czech-German border and waited for some, some guards who were willing to take bribes. Well, first night we didn't make it and there were children who came from Russian--Russian-Jewish children--that the first time I saw a child after the war. And uh, uh, so in the Briha--you heard of them--the Briha helped us cross the border. First, then something happened to me again. I had a suitcase and the handle broke on it, had I didn't know what to do. I found out that in Ăs; was the name of the town on the border, there was a family from our hometown that survived and they were living there. So I thought may they can help, help me. So I, I tried to go to their house and somebody said, "Watch out, somebody's following you." So I ran there and they were hiding me in a, in a barn and then they helped--they got me a backpack and then I was able to, to try and cross the border. Then we came to uh, to Munich at the border we were met by Israeli soldiers who worked for the either HIAS or uh, the, uh...

Daughter: The Haganah?

No, the uh, other organization.

Daughter: The Haganah?

They weren't from the Haganah, but uh, but they was--anyhow, HIAS is one, one organization that brought us out. And so they welcomed us and then we went to Munich and from Munich they sent us to Gabersee, Bavaria. Wasserburg and I was there for awhile. And I met a woman soldier--an American--and because I knew a little English I worked with her.

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