Tomas K. Holocaust testimony (HVT-4132)
- Bratislava, Slovakia : Milan Šimečka Foundation, 1997
- Interview Date
- January 23, 1997.
- 3 copies: 1/2 in. VHS submaster; Betacam SP dub; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
- Cite As
- Tomas K. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-4132). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.
Videotape testimony of Tomas K., who was born in Bratislava, Czechoslovakia (presently Slovakia) in 1929, the younger of two children. He recalls cordial relations with non-Jews; harassment by Hitler Youth starting in 1939; a German neighbor warning him when it was dangerous to go out; expulsion from school; not wearing the yellow star after being harassed for having it; eviction from their apartment in 1940; their landlord allowing them to stay briefly, then reporting them to Hlinka guard; confiscation of the family business; his sister being smuggled to Hungary when deportations started; his family entering Hungary illegally with paid smugglers; their relatives in Budapest refusing to shelter them, fearing for their own safety; his parents moving to a refugee camp (he and his cousin were released due to their young age); meeting his father at the railroad station in June 1944 when he learned his parents were being taken “to work” (they were deported to Auschwitz); his father advising him to go to the Swiss or Swedish embassies; the Swedish embassy sheltering him and providing him with Swedish documents; working for Raoul Wallenberg; Germans breaking into the embassy in January 1945 during the Soviet siege; a German soldier releasing him from a locked room, which saved his life; returning to the embassy after Soviet liberation; observing Wallenberg with Soviets (Wallenberg signaled him to stay away); returning to Bratislava; reunion with his mother (his father did not survive); some friends returning their possessions and others not; his mother persisting in the return of the family business; its nationalization in 1947; and sharing his experiences with his family. Mr. K. attributes his survival to his father's decision to send him away and the German who let him escape.