Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Natalie Zamczyk - January 30, 1984

Remembering the War II

And I went and pick up the boy and he was happy to see me. And she asked me, why you are, I don't know, I don't know, I don't know. I'm already here and the, the place is uh, the man came back and I can go there and this. And I, and I went. Next morning, telephone rings, what is it? She said, my God, the God is taking care of you. Do you know what happened yesterday? Other German lady called her. Yesterday evening, late evening, eleven o'clock or something, Gestapo came and took the two women and the German woman, and the apartment was closed.


My child was gone.


See I was so nervous something, you know. That's what it is. Miracle, miracle, miracle.


So something is there, I don't know. Something must be there, you know. That's what my parents taught me, you know, and that's what I... But I, but very often I was thinking it's true that it's something or not. That's all.

Your son, was he able to, to go to school at all during the time during the war?

No, no.


Not at all. That's why, he was reading, that's all.


That's why after the war when we came, you know, I hired the principal of the school, the friend. I went there to ask, imagine the education, what he had for... He was twelve years old, so he had to make uh, the, you know. So he went there for, he came for a half year, they went to, to school. And even before I left Poland, maybe two or three months before I left Poland, he went to high school, first year of high school. Imagine. How he did it, I don't know.


And he said that there he did, this was different neighborhood. There he didn't feel no anti-Semitism at all. Nobody even, no. He felt very good. But he had had wonderful in Paris. He didn't understand French, so he didn't...


And later he went in, he went to a, you know, they help me to uh, put him in some school, private school, you know. Jewish children, older, you know, uh, how you call, this was, what they had all no parents or.


Orphans, half-orphan.


So he was half of orphan, so he went there. Because I couldn't work in Paris, you know. So he was there. Yeah, yeah.

Did he get any Jewish education?

Jewish education, no.


Because he didn't have where. When he came to Canada, when we came to Canada, so it was a small town here at this time, beautiful, I love it. So he, so we went to shul the first time. I told him about Jewishness, what I know--I didn't, I taught him. So it was Holy Day, so we went to synagogue there and the man there in synagogue, he couldn't, you know, he was already this time uh, eighteen years old or something, you know, seventeen. Something like this, this was later, you know, when I was already settled another first year. So the man said, you don't know how to daven, or something, something. Oh yeah. So, I'm sorry honey. He had to go say kaddish for the father. Yeah. This I knew, you know. So he had to go and say kaddish. I went with him and he didn't know how. So the man said, how do, why do you not know? So he told him, I never learned because I was during the war. So the man helped him. And he told him, you know what, you come to my place, I am not going to charge you and I will teach you. He went there. But he didn't have...he has to go to school. He has, he didn't have background in Canadian school. He had to learn. English language he didn't know. He had to go to school in Canada, so with little children for a whole year, you know. I said, no. For you it's most important now to learn English.

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