Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Henry Dorfman - August 11 & 25, 1989

Escape from Train

You, you got out of the train.


Uh, you told me last time we talked about how you got out of the train finally, when you...

Yes, we, we opened up, like I told you, we got nails and some people had something with them. We didn't, we didn't have--so whatever we could help.

You said you had a hat on, that they used your head to...

Oh, I mean, I, I didn't have a hat on. I just used my own head, I mean, to knock uh, and I was, like I say to, to knock through the wall. I just said that if it would have taken, I don't care if my head would go through the wall. But we, we, we, we did break, like I say the fingers were bleeding and everything else. It took us two days to do it, you know. And it was jump, probably, I don't know twenty, twenty-five, I don't know how many jumped. I didn't see anybody. I don't know, I was just lucky probably and father that we--I jumped first and he, he and, and, and, and, and he jumped right behind me. And we wound up in the valley. I had seen people because the shooting was unbelievable.

The guards on top.

Absolutely. The shooting was outside, I don't know how many survived, you know. I just kept my father--we grabbed both of us by the hand and he, and he ripped a whole piece of meat over here was bleeding, I took my shirt and I put it around him. He was limping, but I don't know where, where the strength comes, what life is. That's the way I see. Everybody wants to live. He knew the directions, my father pretty well because I didn't. He knew the directions, where to go. And uh, took us and he was sleeping uh, there was, you know, still hay on the, on, on the fields and, and hay stacks and, and straw stacks. We didn't go into anybody for about--for the first couple days we didn't go into nobody because we're afraid because they said that area, the, the Gentiles were looking just for Jews to kill 'em, to take away whatever they got. And they were right. Listen, because if they would come, they start hitting you and things you would admit that you have something with you, you understand, what else, you figured maybe you buy your life that time. But this was not the end. They took it away and they killed you anyway. But this we hear. Because we, I, we were not the first people jumping the train, you understand. A lot of people jumped trains. Then we got back to our area, makes the story short, we got into our area. We got into that Meyer and he told us that he has the place for us to go to hide. And he told us where to go. We figured, is it really true about the reasoning, you understand. He's the--escape for him to put us in there and then the Gestapo's going to come and take us, we didn't know what's going to happen. But we went there and my, and my father made a deal with the goy, you know, with the Gentile, to pay him so much a month. Excuse me, I said when we jumped. When we got to our area we found two brothers were together. I don't remember if they jumped the train because they did, they did not jump from our, from our cattle wagon or they got away from the ghetto. They said they jumped--we didn't know--two brothers, so there were four of us. We went all four of us over there. They were hidden for awhile, those, the, the other two because we didn't want to know that Meyer should know that another two, two Jews are there because he just was hiding us. And we were there for awhile. We found out--and it was quiet, quiet down and we were hidden there. Paying the guy--we paid him, we give him a, a piece of gold, you know, like we, we had between--they had two some, you know, we had uh, the Russian rubles, pieces of gold or German. I don't even remember what, you know. But I know we had some because I took out from my shoes, gave it to father and he took care of it. We had uh, I remember we had wedding bands. My father had wedding bands, probably maybe two, three hundred because we had food, we were in the food bus--even in the ghetto, so. People didn't have no money they gave you a ring and you give 'em, and you give 'em a, a bread or a piece of meat, you understand it so. My father accumulated, he had about two or three hundred rings. So he gave that Pole a ring once in awhile, but. We did not tell those Poles that we have money or anything. We said that we're going to get from Meyer, you understand that he gives us. And he was in the guestroom. So we heard that somebody is in the forest hiding from a small town near us. And my father wanted any Jew he, he heard that he could save and bring him in to us. And he did went out. There were again two brothers too and he brought 'em into us at night and the same thing, they were hidden for about a month. That goy did not know that the other two are there. Finally fa...we--father told him there's another couple who'll pay you more money and they're going to be there. And then start they think to eliminating Jews from everyplace because there was no more ghettoes.

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