Mezei, Leslie

Leslie Mezei was born in 1931 in Hungary in a little town called Gödöllő. He had a good relationship with his mother and father. His father was an officer in the Hungarian army, and a lawyer. Leslie lived in a small house and had a tough childhood with some anti-Semitism appearing in his neighborhood and

Levine, Evelyn

Evelyn Levine was born on June 25, 1917 in Hamilton, Ontario.  Growing up Jewish during that time meant dealing with a lot of anti-Semitism.  Evelyn was unable to get an appointment at a hospital; she had to leave Canada to go to Boston just to get into a nursing school.  Evelyn grew up in the interwar period,

Cash, Norm

Norman Cash was born January 1, 1920 in Russia, in the city of Odessa.  When he was one year old his family made the decision to emigrate as the anti-Semitic violence associated with the pogroms was intensifying in the wake of the Great War, where Norm’s father had been a veteran.  The family settled in

Levenheck, Henri

Henri Levenheck was born in Strasbourg, France.  When the war came, he was still a boy, ready for all that his teenage years might bring him.  But the summer of 1940 saw those dreams taken away, replaced by the terrible new reality of Nazi occupation.  henri and his family were forcibly evacuated from Strasbourg and

Eichler, George

George Eichler was born in 1943 in Bratislava, Czechoslovakia. His mom grew up in Bratislava and his dad grew up in Eastern Slovakia. George grew up with a  lot of anti-Semitism but he still attended school and had a decent childhood. George has 2 brothers, Gabriel and Viktor, and also has 1 sister, Naomi. George

Javasky, Ruth

Ruth Javasky was born in Poland in 1929. Her family owned a store prior to the war and people would throw stones through the windows when the store was closed. In 1942 her sister was taken away from her family. The rise of anti-Semitism was rough on her family as she was eventually taken away

Israel, Guta

Guta Israel was born in Sandomierz, Poland, where she was one of seven siblings. The Germans invaded her hometown when she was 13, and the full weight of the Shoah hit soonafter. Polish Jews were quickly placed in ghettos, and while many were murdered in short order by the SS, Guta was among those selected

Katz, Eugene

Eugene Katz was born in Dyszna, Poland in in 1927.  He was one of five children, growing up in a Jewish family not too far from Vilna; he recalls a difficult life, beset by hunger and poverty, but also filled with family and friends.  When war came in 1939, Eugene’s family was in eastern Poland,

Cohen, Norman

Norman Cohen was born in the east end of Toronto in 1923.  Growing up Jewish in the Beach neighbourhood, Norman dealt with the anti-Semitism of the era, as well as the economic pressures that led him to quit school at age 16.  Norman found work around the neighbourhood, and he fondly remembered working for Charlie’s

Friedman, Lili

Lili Friedman is a child survivor from the Holocaust and a longtime supporter of our program here at Crestwood.  Born in Poland at the outset of the war, Lili grew up in the Lodz ghetto, from where she remembers snippets of her childhood.  She and her family were deported to Auschwitz with the liquidation of the

Sloma, Chava

Chava Sloma was born in Otwock, Poland in 1925.  Though she recalled incidents of anti-Semitism, she said her prewar life was for the most part good.  All that changed dramatically in September 1939 though; the family initially fled to Warsaw, but as the German army advanced, the decision was made to separate, and Chava and

Carmelly, Felicia

Felicia Carmelly is a Romanian Holocaust survivor currently residing in Toronto. Born in 1932  amidst European anti-Semitism, Felicia faced persecution at the hands of the Green Shirts in Romania. Felicia and her family were taken from their hometown to Transnistria, an area under Romanian governance where Romanian Jews were forced into mass ghettos. Here, she

Lane, Mark

Mark Lane was born in 1929 in eastern Czechoslovakia, in the village of Olenovo. In 1939, with the division of the country, the area was ceded to Hungary. The family began to struggle, dealing with the rising anti-Semitism and the restrictions that began to be imposed on their daily lives. In the spring of 1944,

Mr. Masters Goes to Germany

The German Federal Government and the Goethe Institute sponsored a weeklong seminar in Berlin and Dresden the week of Monday, October 20.  Mr. Masters was invited to attend, along with eight delegates from the United States.  The group included Grammy winners, board members of the Holocaust museums in Washington and Los Angeles, the Jewish telegraph

Rosenbaum, Helen

Helen Rosenbaum was just under two years old when her family decided to escape the brutality of anti-Semitism in Poland by fleeing to the Soviet Union. Her family’s decision to flee would spare Helen the horrors of the death camps, but it wasn’t without struggles and terror. From the horrors of Nazi-occupied Poland, to the

Kleinberg, Howard

Howard and Nancy Kleinberg are survivors of the Holocaust. They have witnessed the terror, the tears, and pain, and have experienced emotions that are inexplicable. They lost their friends and their families, but have managed to open their hearts to one other. Howard was born in Poland, in 1926 and was the youngest in a

Levy, Leonard

Mr. Leonard Levy was a pilot in the RCAF during WW2, where he completed 32 bombing runs with his Lancaster crew, including the raid on Dresden. A Jewish Canadian, Mr. Levy also gives students insights into the anti-Semitism of the period, both in Canada and in Europe. Mr. Levy is one of the original Memory

Jacobs, Murray

Murray Jacobs grew up in prewar Toronto, where he saw some of the city’s growing pains in the 1930s. That included the infamous Christie Pitts Riots of the 1930s, in which he was involved and was forced to confront the reality of local anti-Semitism. He enlisted in World War Two, where he would serve in

Svirsky, Zin

Zin Svirsky is the grandfather of Crestwood student Jake Elin. Zin Svirsky lived in the Soviet Union for 40 years, from 1935 to 1975. Through events such as World War Two, the Cold War and Stalin’s reign, Zin went from growing up in a poor area of the Ukraine to getting an education and becoming