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[Pages 254-255]

The Day of the Massacre

by Tuvya Sosensky

Translated by Eilat Gordin Levitan
(granddaughter of Bela nee Shulman, cousin of the author)



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Tuvya Sosensky


We hid in the house of Lazar Shlomo Shulman at the edge of Myadel Street. The house was filled with people. Other than the family of Lazar Shlomo, there were young men and women who escaped the massacre from Dolhinov, as well as my wife and my little baby girl.

During that evening, the daughter of Lazar Shlomo arrived in the house. She was about 17 or 18 years old. Before this she had hidden in the village Litvinki, but they brought her home since she had a horrible infection in her leg. I don't know exactly what she had, but she was in terrible pain. Her entire leg became black and the girl wailed in agony, saying, “Kill me! Give me some poison. What value does my life have?” Then all of a sudden would beg and cry, “Save me! Have pity on me. Save me!”

No one could help her. Her mother sat near her and hit her head on the wall, and her father, Lazar Shlomo sat all evening, crying like a little boy. Most of the night the girl cried, and no one who lived there was able to sleep a wink. Only after midnight, the girl fell asleep with exhaustion and with her the rest of the people of the house fell asleep.

On the floor there was hay to sleep on and everyone slept in their clothes. My wife and my baby girl slept on a bench. I couldn't sleep. I had dark premonitions in my heart. I stood by the window and put my forehead on the cold glass. Frozen and dejected, I didn't move. The night was facing against me, a chasm without an end….


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Tuvia Sosensky on the left with brother
during better days c 1930


All of a sudden I heard the sound of a truck coming nearby. It stopped about 20 meters in front of the house, and German soldiers jumped out of the truck and spread out to the fog. Immediately I woke up all the sleeping people. Everyone panicked and went to the underground hideout.

My wife and daughter and I did not stay in the house. We looked for another hiding place, entering the home of the neighbors. I went outside to check on the situation. I saw the Germans coming by with flashlights in their hands. I jumped above the fence and entered the home of Netta Zimmerman and waited there.

All of a sudden, the door opened and Yankel Orchik Alperovich came running, and in a panicked manner announced, “Jews… very bad. I was running together with Chaim Itza. They shot at us and Chaim Itza was killed.”

He ran to a hiding place in the back of the house, and I stayed in the front of the house. The door opened and three Germans with drawn guns entered the house. They searched with their flashlights and they only found me with an old Jew who stood near me. They took us out, and when we came out we saw that the house of Lazar Shlomo Shulman was burning.

Outside stood a group of six people, including Dvoshol Zokovsky the teacher, Yakov Leib Torov, and four others. They ordered us to go in the direction of the market. I walked near Dvoshol. When we walked near the house Paikon, we saw that in a puddle of blood lay the body of the rabbi's widow (Moshe Aron Feldman's wife).

Dvoshol was limping, so she walked slowly. The Germans kept pushing her, but she begged them, saying that it was hard to walk fast. A soldier slapped her.

Dvoshel said to me calmly;

“On the day that I am to be killed they slap me”
When we entered the market we saw that the house of Zusha Benes was lit on fire. The Christians kept poking their heads out of the yard, but the Germans warned them not to be in the street. We arrived in the market, where we saw very many Jews. They all sat lined up on the ground, shaking from the cold and fear. Every moment, a new person came. My wife and baby daughter came. I sat facing the pharmacy. All of a sudden, Lumia Shnerson (the pharmacist) came to the window. He was wearing his white apron, and he was as pale as a ghost. For one minute he stood by the window, shaking his head as if he was lamenting his fate. After a short time they brought the baker Shabtai Gordon, and then Avraham Meir Cohen, his sister Soshka, and their parents, and then a Christian woman appeared from the edge of the alley. She held a little Jewish kid, about five years old, and she took him to one of the Germans and said, “Here, another Jew for you.”

The German commander announced all of a sudden that some professional people would be taken away. HE collected 27 people, and I was amongst them. Others were Tabel Markon and her husband and two children. They took us in a truck and brought us to Vileyka…



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1933, Tuvia Sosensky in the middle between his cousins;
Rashka and Rivka Shulman

Sitting on the bottom Tamar Wolf (his sister), cousin Nyomka Shulman, ?
On the right; the Shulman family. On the left ?


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