Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Regina Cohen - April 18, 1982

Recognizing Trouble

Totally restricted.

That's it, restricted all the way, everywhere. As a matter of fact, I think um, even going to synagogues was restricted towards the end. We were just gathering. You don't gather a group--people do not gather. And uh, uh, I don't know possibly, and I'm sure that most of the grown-ups knew or must have known or should have known that if things are going from bad to worse and how much worse--that something is up that is--there was coming to an end. And sometimes I'm thinking, "Why didn't somebody stop it?" Because I'm looking at it from m...my age point of view. You know, by, by the time I reached that plateau of the end of my hometown, I was just turned--I just turned fourteen. And by the age of fourteen, I hadn't traveled anywhere far, maybe in a next town for a, a day or a weekend to a relative. Coming onto a train with masses and masses of people and going somewhere--to me it looked like um, an unknown. A, a, a overwhelming. It's like--at times I think about it now, it was like thrown in a pit of some kind and I couldn't--it's a jar--couldn't understand what it's all about, where we're going, why.


The idea of dying--a child hears about dying, but doesn't know what dying is. So what do I know when they said, "They're going to be killed, they're going to die." I hadn't really seen what, what happens when a person dies. I hadn't seen dead people. I've never been to a funeral, never seen anybody die, so...

At that time.

At that time. So the whole concept of it, it was just overwhelming. It was just a total...

Are you talking about masses of people going on trains?

Masses, all of us.

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