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Irena K. Holocaust testimony (HVT-4417) interviewed by Joanne Weiner Rudof

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-4417

Videotape testimony of Irena K., who was born in Velykyĭ Bereznyĭ, Czechoslovakia (presently Ukraine) in 1918, one of seven children. She recalls attending a Czech school; Hungarian occupation; three brothers moving to Budapest; ghettozation with her parents and sister in Uz︠h︡horod; one brother joining them; their deportation to Auschwitz six weeks later; separation from her family with her sister; working in the hospital; defying regulations by allowing visitors; Dr. Gisella Perl giving her life-saving medication when she was ill; her cousin giving birth; the immediate “disappearance” of mother and child; a death march in January 1945 to Rechlin, Malchow, then Ravensbrück; liberation from another death march by Soviet troops; traveling to Prague with her sister; reunion with their brothers; attending a wedding in Satu Mare; meeting her future husband; marriage in 1946; her daughter's birth; her husband's imprisonment by the communists; leaving her daughter with the Red Cross while obtaining his release; moving to Buziaș to wait for emigration papers; traveling to Prague with her daughter; her brother and others in Betar arranging her illegal emigration to Brussels; joining all her siblings in Paris; her husband's arrival; her son's birth; and their emigration to Israel in 1950, then to the United States in 1958. Ms. K. discusses losing all feelings in camps; her sister's support when she lost the will to live; not discussing her experiences so she would not relive the pain; and the limits of language to describe what she experienced.

Author/Creator
K., Irena, 1918-
Published
New Haven, Conn. : Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, 2008
Interview Date
May 12, 2008.
Language
English
Copies
3 copies: DVCam Master; Betacam SP submaster; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Irena K. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-4417). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.