Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Larry Wayne - 2005

Transport to Birkenau

You went in a box car.

Yeah, cattle car.

What was it like?

What like? It's a, a lot of people in a car. And, and it's hard to describe. It's uh, we had kinda feeling that it's not going to be good, you know.

Were people crying, screaming?

Crying, screaming. ??? you know, it's nothing you can do about it. In August.

In August?

No, we were in almost the last one from Łódź Ghetto, September.

Was it hot?

Yeah, we were one of the last transports. Oh, hot, it was just unbearable. All these kind of thing, all, all thing was unbearable, you know, it's kind of uh, hard to describe what it was.

Do you remember the smell?

The only thing that was worse than that was uh, when we uh, in uh, January 17 we left Auschwitz because the Germans--the Russians were coming and didn't, didn't want to, to find anybody there. And they took all the prisoners with them from Auschwitz and Birkenau on a two-week--that whole famous march. They took us all the way to Gleiwitz and marching in the middle of the winter. And they were dying, and, and people were dying, dropping like dead. And, and after they dropped SS put a bullet in their head because they were afraid they might be just trying to, to, to run away. And then when we finally got to Auschwitz uh, through Gleiwitz, they finally loaded us in cars. Now these were old cars. They're not like cattle cars, you know, that they were covered and everything else, they were open in winter time and a hundred and twenty people were put it in each of these cars without food, without any--people were killing, there were, there were a lot of cases of uh, cannibalism in it. Where the person died and people tried to eat them.

Did you see any of that?

Yes, yes. I was lucky I was with my brother at that time and we were able--when we were in Gleiwitz we, we found some dry, dry vegetables or something, we put, put a little in our pocket and were trying to eat it and people tried to attack us, you know, could they have some too, naturally. We fought it off, it was, there were two of us.

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