Valeria S. Holocaust testimony (HVT-3958) interviewed by Peter Salner and Ingrid Králová
- Bratislava, Slovakia : Milan Šimečka Foundation, 1997
- Interview Date
- July 4, 1997.
- 3 copies: 1/2 in. VHS master; Betacam SP submaster; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
- Cite As
- Valeria S. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-3958). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.
Videotape testimony of Valeria S., who was born in Čata, Czechoslovakia (presently Slovakia) in 1928, one of three sisters. She recounts cordial relations with non-Jews; Hungarian occupation in 1939, followed by anti-Jewish restrictions; confiscation of the family store; working to obtain food for her family; German invasion in March 1944; round-up and transport to Levice in May; deportation with her family to Auschwitz; horrendous conditions in the cattle car en route; an SS threatening to shoot her for assisting her grandmother to debark; separation with her sisters from their family; having all their hair shaved and receiving odd clothing; endless roll calls and terrible hunger; later being told of the gas chambers and crematoria (they thought the smoking chimneys were factories); crying all the time; the psychic pain of being compelled to attend a concert while living under conditions of total deprivation; her sisters being selected for transfer; sneaking to their side; transport to Stutthof; slave labor digging trenches; an attack by a dog resulting in her lifelong fear of dogs; transfer to another camp; entering a passive vegetative state, having lost all human feelings; a death march; an SS giving her sister extra food that she shared with her, her other sister, and cousin; escaping with her sisters and cousin; liberation by Soviet troops who fed and clothed them; locking themselves into a room to avoid rape; returning home, hoping to find their parents (they did not survive); marriage; the births of her children; her husband's death; and moving to Israel to join her daughter. Ms. S. recalls a slave labor supervisor who left food that she shared with her sisters and cousin; not discussing her experiences with her sisters and only recently with her children; and frequent nightmares.