Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Michael Weiss - October 7, 1994


You went back to Buchenwald.

Not. No. But they didn't accepted me there.

At Zeitz he continued to work then.

Yes. He went and we tried to, to uh, we shouldn't work that much and so forth. But the thing was if the SS came let's say we were ten in a group or something, and he seen somebody's not working, many times he beat up everybody. It's what I saw.

Did you continue to daven?


You still davened?

We davened. We davened on the road. Going to work. Coming to work, oh...

Even after the beating?

Oh yes. Oh, how many times we davened, we stood up hill. How many times we sat till...oh, that was continuing.

When you were through at Zeitz, they, they took you back to Buchenwald.

Naw. Again uh, and this was a few weeks...a, this was in April of '45. Again another transport was supposed to go back and bring new people--a thousand people from Buchenwald. New people, a thousand people back there and I was within that thousand already. I was sick. I was--they looked at me and they put me right between the thousand back to Buchenwald.

What, what--and where was your father?

My father went back. He went back in January and this was in April. He went back to Buchenwald in January.

And, and he tried to get into the hospital?

Well, this uh, there wasn't such a thing...


When they, when they took him to Buchenwald he died there. He died there. ??? to take him to the...places, uh...

But he died ???

Well they took him to the crematorium.

That was the infirmary?

Oh, that's the infirmary?

Is that what you mean?

Oh, oh, eh, no I--sorry, I thought, I thought that really where they're going, they take them to the hospital. Or the infirmary. But the reality of it whoever was picked to go back there they didn't want it to hear if you got your turn they gonna gas you.

Were there gas chambers in Buchenwald?


I mean there were crematorium, I mean.

What is the difference? I, I, I, yeah--I think that in Buchenwald, in other words, they waited for the natural death. You know what I mean? So that's why...

They had lots of ways of killing people. Uh, when did you find out that he had died?

Well really to find out as such I never did. I didn't since I don't have. Uh, when I got to Buchenwald I talked with Kapos. Not many wants to talk to you and things. And I told them whoever comes from there, and I was, well, lucky. I went with the same afterwards. And uh, my liberation, why I'm here today. It is a miracle too. And I couldn't give you an answer up to date how it happened. In Buchenwald, when they see the American coming already, what they took they tried to take people out of there and take 'em far away from the Americans. So the first day a German comes in all assemble ??? for Juden austreten. All the Jewish stand in a line. And if they--if anybody told me something, I know I have to follow. And I go out there in the line. You--Germans said out in the line. And they counted a thousand. And the rest of it go back to the barracks. I go back to the barrack and I see he's an older man. I see ??? Didn't you hear? The Germans said to go up. He says that "I couldn't walk from here to the gate." Buchenwald was a big, big camp. "So what's the difference that they shoot me here or they shoot me by the gate?" And then I sat down for a moment. I says, "Look, I can walk to the gate, but not that much farther." He says, "You stick with me and do what I do." The next day they came in. I stayed. The third day didn't, they didn't have enough people and they start to drag out people. And beating. He was pulling me and beat me and then left me there. I didn't ran no place. And I don't know. They, they were pulling that old man out too. I don't know what happened to him. But that man... I don't know--was he an angel? Who was he? If you could tell me that next day I'm, I'm... And up to date, he saved my life.

You would have gone out and they would have shot you?

I, I, I didn't know any... He told me I...I never was taught or taught to think. You know, maybe you don't have to really. This man gave me a little ???

This is now in April.

This is eh, in April, yes. The end of April. And in May we got hit by it. This is May.

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