Kersh, Mervyn

Mervyn Kersh was born December 20, 1924 in South London. He grew up with two older siblings in a middle class Jewish family in the neighbourhood of Brixton; he experienced significant anti-Semitism at school, until his parents moved him to a Jewish school. They also enrolled him in the Jewish Lads’ Brigade, and Mervyn too

Bein, Don

Don Bein was born June 5, 1925 in Davenport, Iowa.  He grew up against the backdrop of the Great Depression and the early years of the war, graduating from high school in 1943.  He promptly received his draft notice and headed off to Fort Benning, Georgia.  As he had passed the army IQ test he

Black, Judith

Judith Nemes Black was born November 15, 1941 in Budapest, Hungary.  She grew up against the backdrop of the war and the mounting restrictions that Hungarian Jews were forced to endure, including the conscription of her father into forced labour.  In 1944 the situation deteriorated for Hungarian Jews; Nazi Germany invaded and the fascist Arrow

Samet, Judah

Judah Samet was born in Debrecen, Hungary on February 5, 1938.  He attributes his wartime survival to his mother, whose brave actions brought Judah and his siblings through the war.  Hungary’s Jews had been insulated from the worst horrors of the Shoah for most of the war, but all that ended with the German invasion

Quint, Rena

Rena Quint was born in 1935 and 1936, depending on the source.  This is because of her early life circumstances, before and after the Shoah.  Her birth family, her two parents and her two brothers, did not survive, and her adoptive mother in Sweden changed Rena’s birthdate to match that of her own deceased daughter. 

Engel, Yolanda

Yolanda Engel (nee Lebovics) was born December 11, 1937.  She grew up in wartime Hungary, sheltered from events until the German occupation of 1944. Her father had been conscripted into the labour battalions by that time, and the remaining family members were taken into the ghetto. Shortly after that, Yolanda’s mother was taken away to

McLoughlin, Barbara

Barbara McLoughlin was born July 1, 1920, in Devon, England, and she grew up in and around Teignmouth.  Her father immigrated to England from Italy at the turn of the century; he grew up to be a loyal Englishman, serving in the Great War.  He married an Englishwoman from Devon – Barbara’s mother – and

Szabo, Paul

Paul Szabo was born in 1933 Hungary. His family was made up of his mother, father and sister, who was 3 years older than he. Paul’s father was a manager in charge of a small factory manufacturing plumbing fixtures. His mother was an accountant before the war, working for a pharmaceutical company. Paul and his

Weisberg, Sam

On December 7th, 2015, six students from Crestwood Preparatory College went to the Baycrest Centre to interview Sam Weisberg, accompanied by his wife, Rosa. Sam is a Holocaust survivor, born to a Jewish family in a German-speaking region of Poland called Silesia in 1927. He was taken to the Krakow ghetto, and later to multiple

Grosman, Riva

Riva Grosman was born May 17, 1926 in Poland (present-day Belarus).  Riva had three sisters and her parents, and they were well off for the time as her father was a lumber merchant.  Because of this Riva and her sisters went to a private school.  At the beginning of the war, Riva and her family

CBC News visits Crestwood

On Tuesday, February 12th, a television crew from CBC News visited Crestwood Preparatory College to film Howard and Nancy Kleinburg speak to students as part of the Oral History Project. Howard was born in Poland, in 1926 and was the youngest brother of ten.— in 1941 his entire family had to pack up their things

Zimmerman, Rose

Rose Zimmerman comes from Poland, where she and her family were living a normal life before 1939. The advent of the war saw all of that turned upside down; she and her family experienced the full weight of the Shoah, and Rose herself ended up a slave labourer in Auschwitz, before ending the war in

Nussbaum, Aaron

Aaron Nussbaum was born in Sandomierz in Poland. He stayed here until he could not hide from the Nazis anymore. He spent 8 months in Bergen Belsen where he was rescued by American troops. Aaron was sent to Palestine at the age of 13, until he joined his mother and brother in Canada. He fought

Kleinberg, Nancy

Nancy and Howard 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 managed to open their hearts to one other. Nancy comes from a small town in Poland where she grew up with five

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

Hacker, Alex

Alex Hacker was born in Budapest, Hungary on May 7, 1926.  His father was a successful businessman in the vegetable oil business, and because of that  – as well as Hungary’s alliance with Nazi Germany – Alex and his family and the Jews of Hungary in general were shielded from the immediate brutality of the

Woznicki, Marvin

Marvin Woznicki was born in Silesia, Poland in 1925. Marvin grew up there in a house with his parents, his brother and his two sisters. Marvin attended grade school in Poland up to Grade 4. He had a happy childhood in his early years growing up, until all of that changed. Marvin was only fourteen

Berkovitz, Helen

Helen Berkovitz was born in 1921 in Tacsava, Czechoslovakia. The eldest of three sisters, Helen lost both parents in Auschwitz and was interned with her sisters in Bergen-Belsen and Theresientadt. After liberation, Helen met her husband at a collection point for the camps near the Austrian border, and they went through the DP camp life together as

Jacobs, David

Mr. David Jacobs was born in Tomaszów, Poland. He grew up within the small town, and soon joined his father in working at their family tailoring shop. At age 18, when the war broke out, Mr. Jacobs was sent to Buchenwald concentration camp, where he served as a slave labourer. Mr. Jacobs traveled across Europe

Meisels, Leslie

Leslie Meisels was born in Nádudvar, Hungary in 1927. He lived with his parents, two brothers, and both sets of grandparents. He survived the ghetto in Debrecen, slave labour and eventual deportation to Bergen-Belsen. He was liberated in April 1945 by the US Army. His mother, father and both brothers also survived. Leslie immigrated to

Willinger, Gershon

Gershon Willinger was born in Holland, in 1942.  His experience in the Holocaust is a very different story because he was a very young boy who was unaware of his environment, and did not know what to do. Guido and Edith, his parents, were German Jews. They were both murdered in 1943, in a Polish