Advanced Search

Learn About The Holocaust

Special Collections

My Saved Research




Skip to main content

Leah K. Holocaust testimony (HVT-4166)

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-4166

Videotape testimony of Leah K., who was born in Gertsa, Romania (presently Hert︠s︡a, Ukraine) in approximately 1932, the youngest of seven children. She recounts attending private Hebrew school; her mother's role as a midwife and healer; antisemitic violence; joyful holiday and Sabbath observances; Soviet occupation; Romanian takeover; fleeing with her family after being warned they would be killed; a reprieve from execution when a Romanian soldier recognized her mother as the woman who had delivered him; returning home; a death march to Edineț in fall 1941; continuing to Ataki; her father's murder and disappearance of her brothers; staying overnight in Mohyliv-Podilʹsʹkyĭ, then transfer to Shargorod; one sister's death; transfer with her mother and twin sisters to the Kopaygorod ghetto; smuggling food for her family; her sisters' and mother's deaths; escaping to seek her aunt in Mogilev; a non-Jewish woman feeding and clothing her; continuing her journey; being mauled by dogs; women rescuing and caring for her; finding her aunt in the Mogilev ghetto; living in an orphanage; escaping; living as a non-Jew with a local woman; Jews denouncing her; deportation to Peciora; observing cannibalism; escaping; staying with many peasants en route to Mogilev; staying with the local woman with whom she had previously lived; renouncing her Judaism; moving to a Bucharest orphanage in 1944; apprenticeship as a dressmaker; her brother finding her; moving to an orphanage for children going to Palestine; missing that opportunity due to illness; and her other brother finding her. Ms. K. discusses attributing her survival to many simple peasants who helped her; plastic surgery in Canada to repair facial scars from the dog attack; her education there; and abusive treatment by a German psychiatrist when applying for reparations in 1968.

K., Leah , 1932?-
Tel Aviv, Israel : Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, 2000
Interview Date
March 2, 2000.
Transnistria (Territory under German and Romanian occupation, 1941-1944)
Hert︠s︡a (Ukraine)
Edineț (Moldova : Raion)
Ataki (Moldova)
Mohyliv-Podilʹsʹkyĭ (Ukraine)
Sharhorod (Ukraine)
Kopaĭhorod (Ukraine)
Bucharest (Romania)
2 copies: Betacam SP master; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Leah K. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-4166). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.