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[Pages 339- 359]

June 1941, The Germans entrance to Dunilovichi

By Yitzhak Mushkat (A survivor, now in Argentina)

Translated by Eilat Gordin Levitan

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Yitzhak Mushkat

 

At the onset of the second war world, in September of 1939, the Soviets annexed eastern Poland. After the difficult winter of 1940/ 1941, the Red Army had settled into the shtetl. In 1941, during the month of June, I worked as a gardener. In that year, almost all of the fruit trees froze. In the spring, we had to ride out to cut and count up the remaining trees. It was a very nice day. Suddenly, there was a commotion. Our hector ran over and told us the “good” news, we were at war again. Germany attacked the Soviet Union. No one rode anywhere, people believed in the strength of the Red Army. Two hours later we saw the “metal birds” and a mad rush. All of the Soviet/ Russian institutions began to pack in order to retreat from the rapidly approaching Nazis. At 3:00 A.M., they brought me a notice. I was to show up at the place of mobilization. At 6:00 A. M., they (the Soviet authorities) gave me two horses and a large wagon, and told me to ride in the direction of Glubokie. On the road, there were already long columns. Oxen and goats were tied behind the wagons. Also the military was retreating to the Russian border ( The former border pre 1939, east of Dunilovichi. The full force of the panic could already be felt. All prisoners were released. Arriving at Glubokie, we stopped at a side road because by this time taller places had been bombed. I found about twenty of our young people in Glubokie. They were also fleeing closer to the border. Suddenly, they told us that it was already too late, and that everyone could go where they want to go, the border are sealed and the Germans took over the area of Minsk. I gave my horses to our townsfolk, and together with other Dunilovichi Jews turned back towards the shtetl. We had left our families there.

When we got there, there was still light and Dunilovichi was filled with peasants from the villages who had come to the shtetl to steal. Jews were locked in their homes in fear and awaited their fate. They packed and some tried to ride away, but with children, it was impossible. They had to turn back. It was this way until the Germans arrived. Meanwhile, Jews made some order out of their bit of goods. Every Jew was somewhat acquainted with the peasants of the villages and of the shtetl. Everything was given to them to hide away. This added to our misfortune because later, every peasant helped the murderers in order to keep the Jewish possessions.

The Polish youth, organized as German spies, were as numerous as flies. Six days later, at 9:00 A. M., the first German tank arrived. In some places, individual Russian soldiers were hiding out. There was a small exchange of gunfire and we Jews paid for it. About two hours later, after the tanks arrival, German soldiers poured in like sand. Our house was in the soldiers' path and the door just did not close. They immediately began to bother us, beating us.

Everyone was taken for forced labor. The first job was to repair the roads, since the heavy vehicles had ruined them. Jews had to immediately repair them. From the forests, they had to carry heavy logs on their shoulders. The murderers walked alongside to drive them on. Also, the Jews did other labor which suited them, such as washing the wagons and the horses and shining shoes. This was during the first few days. Some of the military stayed in the shtetl to set things in order. Polish police were organized under German authority. Decrees were immediately issued. At 9:00 A.M. everyone was ordered to be at the lake. Anyone found at home after that was to be killed. Understandably, everyone gathered even earlier.

The first command from the murderers was “Assemble in a circle, women and men separately!” Hearts beating with fright, we heard the first decree: “All Jews must by tomorrow wear a yellow patch on both sides with the letter J for Jew. No Jew may walk on the sidewalk or go more than three kilometers out of the shtetl. Every Jew must report on time for daily labor.” After scores of such decrees the Polish police ran rampant. I remember how they drove us into the lake to wash the German wagons.

Once while coming home from hard labor, a peasant gave Yaakov Manfilk a head of cabbage. A German noticed this and he was given ten lashes, which immobilized him for two weeks. Every evening after work, the Polish police would herd all of the young people together in the bitter cold and order them to immerse themselves in the lake. Then they would drive them out and force them to roll in the mud. One day, when I was working on the gardens with ten other men and coming back late, a policeman came and ordered us to report to the police station in ten minutes. We knew what this meant, but we had no choice. When I got there, I was given a letter to take to the village of Zuferke, eight kilometers away. Ordered to leave the shtetl and return in three hours with an acknowledgement. I ran as fast as I could and brought it back.

As I entered the police station, I noticed the worst murderer, a Polish non-Jew, whose only job was to torture

Jews , standing there. When I saw him, I knew that I wouldn't get out unharmed. I simply asked if I was free to go. He quickly remarked that I wasn't yet free of him. He took me into a separate room and for no reason began to beat me until I fell. Then he took his gun and again beat me until he knocked out some of my teeth. When I began to scream, a second one came in and told me to go. He told me not to reveal who had beaten me. If I did, my entire family would be beaten. My only consolation was that I had escaped death. Even with my intense pain, I still had to go to work the next morning.

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Avraham Chaim Mushkat,
a partisan

 

My father and brother were also badly beaten because they had given a wagon to a Christian acquaintance and another had informed on them. They were so badly beaten that they were swollen. The parents of children who had fled to Russia were called. Yoel-Pinye Svirsky, Shalom Naratzky, Barkan and many others came and many didn't, because there were too many to call. Whomsoever they wished to beat, they did so immediately.

They ordered that a Judenrat be chosen, given the responsibility for everything, including labor. They were Jewish Police, who would carry out everything that they were told to do.

One morning, they announced that shtetl Jews must gather in a ghetto. Our town was close to a lake and a river, and the street near the lake was set up as the ghetto. The thousand Jews of Dunilovichi had to gather in this one small street. All of the Jews had to be inside within twenty-four hours with no more than twenty-five kilograms of possessions. Furniture and valuable things, as well as cows and horses, were immediately confiscated. As much as people had, they surreptitiously carried into the Ghetto. The ghetto was sealed with a gate as an exit. The gate was near Kapekovitsh's home and that was also established as Judenrat headquarters. The thousand people were crowded in, a number of families assigned to each house. One could feel the closeness of death. I already mentioned how we were driven daily to the hardest of labors and so, regardless of living conditions, we were satisfied that at list they needed us. We ourselves sought out the creation of more work, because the shtetls with no work were immediately destroyed. Forty Polish policemen came daily and began to order things such as shoes and boots. Whatever they wanted had to be ready on time. The ghetto had to provide it all. If we didn't have it, we had to go to Glubokie, where everything could be had for money. On top of it all, we were often visited by the SS. This already involved with providing them with bribes of large sums of money, jewelry and other items. If not provided, the penalty was death. Understandably, one who no longer had anything to give was on the death list. As a result of fear and the daily depressing news, there was no strength for anything.

Suddenly, we heard that several fleeing Sharkovshchyzna Jews, survivors of the slaughter in their town, had arrived. Many had fled to Glubokie and others to the forests.

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Shaptel Ruderman

 

In our ghetto, the Jewish police were ordered to go search for the escapees in the forests. It was also announced that any of the escapees who came forward on their own would not be harmed. Some actually went to other ghettoes, but tragedy also struck them and with each passing day, we heard of more slaughters. It was very bad for the escapees. If one came secretly into the ghetto and was discovered, the ghetto was no longer safe. Murderers used to wait impatiently for this moment. In this way, we lived for half a year. Some of our shtetl people worked in Lutzky, ten kilometers from the shtetl. Of the twelve men who worked there, eight perished.

On the thirteenth of Kislev (Nov. 22, 1942) at 3:00 A.M., all Jews in the Ghetto became very frightened. We realized that the Germans surrounded the ghetto. People began to flee like sheep, but there was nowhere to run. Whoever approached the fence was immediately killed. Everyone had prepared ahead some hiding place in the ghetto. There was no other alternative, so families ran to their hideouts and some, to their attics. There was such a panic that some died of fright. We had also made a hiding place in a stable, but there was room for only 8 people. In fleeing, we accumulated about twenty people and there was no air to breathe. Near our hiding place there was another one with about sixty people. As soon as a child cried out, the murderers heard it and they threw grenades, killing everyone. They began to search for our entrance, but with the coming of evening, they didn't succeed in finding it.

At 1:00 A.M., we exited our hideout. It was horrible; corpses and patrols were everywhere. It was impossible to remain safe. No matter what, we had to flee. It was bitter cold and the lake was frozen. At two in the morning, we exited. It was dark and we ran over corpses, ran through the street and began to race across the lake. To get to the forest, we had to run three kilometers. As we were running across the lake, they suddenly opened fire from all sides. We continued running. Due to our fright, we were separated and some ran into their deaths. We came closer to the forest and there we saw that of the original twenty, only seven remained. Three members of the Ruderman family, Nehamke Shvimmer's grandson, Berl Zeitlin, my brother Abraham and I. We began to go back to see what had happened to the others, but we saw that we were being chased, so we went deeper into the forest. There, they again opened heavy fire on us, but in the forest, we were safe.

We couldn't discover what had happened to the others. We stood for a while, not knowing what to do. Hungry and frightened, all we heard was shooting. We wanted to join the partisans but didn't know where the partisans were. We had simply heard rumors that in the forests there were partisans who came to fight the Germans, but we had never seen them. There was a small village of five houses named Cazinirovke, deep in the forest, seven kilometers from the shtetl. Christian acquaintances were there. We decided to go there, get some bread, and find out something, anything. We thought we knew the way, but no matter what direction we turned, we ended up in the same place. We didn't know why, perhaps the fear and hunger, but that's the way it was. Finally we reached it. We carefully approached one house and knocked, but no one answered. Then we saw a small fire in one house. They had all already wanted to leave. I knocked and an old Christian came out. I asked him if we could enter to warm ourselves a bit, providing that no one was there. He answered yes, no one was there. We went into the house. It didn't even take five minutes before our sister, who is now with us in Argentina, ran out to us. Here, we became aware of the tragedy. She told us that when they had fled, Shalom Gurvitsh, his son, wife and child, and my two older sisters were with them. Fleeing to the village of Petrovitsh, a Polish murderer had caught up with them and killed them. She had hidden herself behind a stable and in that way, survived. Then she fled again, not knowing where to go. As she was fleeing, she heard about our parents and another sister who had also been chased. She hadn't known anything about us, so she decided to return to the shtetl. Going alone, upset with fear, an old man had suddenly come out of the forest and told her to go back, showing her where to go. She then came to that farm, where we met her in hiding. In this way, it was destined that we suffer together.

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Chayke Mushkat

 

We went out of the house and dawn was breaking. By day, we had to be careful not to be seen. We went deeper into the forest. The frost was fierce and we had nothing to wear. We didn't dare make a fire. We again went around in circles. Suddenly we saw a small boy sitting on a tree stump, eating a piece of bread. He was wounded in his leg. This was Reuven Furman's eight-year-old son. While running across the lake, he had been shot in the leg. He told us, “I made out as if I was dead. When the policeman went away, I ran into the forest. I was in the forest with my father and two brothers. Where they are, I don't know because I had fallen asleep. When I awoke they were gone.” We couldn't understand why the father had abandoned his son. We asked him, “Where could they have gone?” He answered that he had simply heard them saying that they must go to the Shnitz Forests, where there were partisans.

When we heard this, we had a shred of hope. We decided to go there since we might meet up with the partisans, but what to do with the boy? He wants to go, but he can't, since he is limping badly, and it is about forty-five kilometers to Shmitz. We bandaged his foot with a torn shirt. A rich peasant lived nearby. We brought him there and asked that he keep him until we find his father. We told the peasant that if he turns him over to the Germans, the partisans will come and burn down his entire farm. He took him and made a shepherd of him. We went in the direction of Shmitz and had to cover the distance in one night. Since we were very tired, we went to a peasant, a very good Christian, who lived in the forest about halfway there. There we found eight other Dunilovichi people. This peasant treated all of us like royalty.

We ate something, rested and then continued on our way at about two in the morning.

We penetrated deeper into the forest. Suddenly, we heard a child's voice screaming, “Mama!” The echo was from a distance and upset us all. We went on until it got light. We stopped again, deeper in the forest, until dark. The trees were covered with light snow. Before our eyes, there seemed to appear different forms of palaces and mills. We couldn't understand it. Maybe it was a mirage, a result of fright, but that's the way it was.

When it got dark, we went on. We came to a village. From the village it was still about eight kilometers to Shmitz. We asked the peasants where the partisans were and they told us that we still had about six kilometers to go. And that's how it was. As we left the village we saw two people armed with guns and grenades. One was in civilian clothes and the other in a German uniform. As soon as they saw us, they stopped us and asked who we were. We didn't know who they were, but since they spoke Russian to us, we understood that they were partisans. They told us to go with them and about one kilometer away, a man on a horse galloped up, as drunk as Lot, and began shouting at us with such taunts that we thought we were caught. He chased us so quickly that we were exhausted. In this way we were chased for three kilometers, until we came close to a house. There they took us in. We met all sorts of people there, dressed in all sorts of uniforms, civilian as well as military. They lined us up, questioning us and taunting us until they ordered that we be taken into the forest. We had imagined it would be different and we wanted to flee. We were driven deep into the forest until we noticed patrols at their posts. One was an acquaintance from the shtetl. Then we understood that these were the partisans. We met people from Dunilovichi such as Leib Gentzel and his daughter and Reuven Furman and his two sons. This was the father who had left his small son in the forest.

They told us to eat and rest and then to work on building huts. We breathed freely because we now found ourselves in the forest with the partisans. We were saved! There was a small brigade here of only about eighty, under the command of Markov.

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Lea Bar Lorens- Kagan

 

They brought us to the huts and we told the father that we had seen his son. One of his sons took a sleigh and horse and with another partisan went after the boy, whom they found three kilometers away. As the boy tells it, he hadn't wanted to stay and had followed us.

We traveled for six days and there was enough to eat. Unfortunately the joy passed quickly. The commander came and told us that six thousand Germans were preparing to surround the forest in order to catch the partisans. Since we had no arms and the partisans were going elsewhere, we couldn't go with them. Our pleas and cries were of no avail. The commander simply gave us a document stating that we should be helped wherever we go. Since we had to cross the front lines, he wrote out where we should and shouldn't go. We had to travel about four hundred kilometers, crossing all of the German railway lines in order to reach the Russian side.

We gathered, cried for a while and decided to go. “Whatever will be will be!” Since a group of thirty can easily be spotted and find it difficult to procure food, we divided into three groups. We had to travel only by night and hide in the woods by day. We also had with us a pregnant woman, the wife of Shalom Gurvitsh. The problem of what to do with her was a serious one. Since she had a friend, Yitzhok Goldman, she remained with him and his group. He had many Christian acquaintances and she was hidden by one of them. The first group started out. The worst part the commander warned us about was crossing two railway lines and a bridge which the Germans had strongly fortified. If we could pass through those, the rest would be easy.

We covered very little ground the first night since we didn't know what to do. To travel in such a risky way where we had never been and where no one knew the area was hard. By the second night we traveled at full speed. We covered twenty to twenty-five kilometers each night. Tired, with frozen feet and half-starved, we had twenty-five kilometers more before the first railway line near Pohost. We entered a village and asked that they cook us a pot of potatoes. Since we weren't refused, we waited. Meanwhile, they alerted the police. Fortunately we noticed that something was wrong and we escaped. In a few weeks we heard that the second group had also gone through the same village and two were caught, a father and a son. It was Mote the tailor and his son. They were tortured. We stayed in the forest all day. We couldn't sit or stand because our feet were broken in pain from traveling.

We dragged ourselves to the first railway line. It was two in the morning. We suddenly noticed fires near the line and Germans patrolling with dogs to protect the line. We lay down and searched for a way through. The entire line and station were blocked off with a wooden fence so that the snow wouldn't drift onto the line. Suddenly, while we lay there and listened, a train arrived. We then quickly and carefully broke through a few boards and ran speedily across the line into the woods. We came to a house, knocked and asked for directions. We were going the right way, just as the commander had told us. With the arrival of dawn, we went into the deep woods and waited for dark. Then we entered a house, cooked some potatoes, rested for a few hours and went further. The next day we found out that many Germans had been looking for us in the forest, but they had gone off in another direction. We knew how to camouflage ourselves in the winter woods, and this saved us from falling into a trap.

We still had eighteen kilometers to go before the bridge. They told us to be very careful by the river. If we couldn't find a boat we would have to swim across.

The bridge traversed a nobleman's courtyard. The Germans were stationed in the palace, guarding the bridge. Since we didn't know exactly where the courtyard was, we ran through and met no one. Going through, we saw that in the palace the Germans were dancing in a drunkenly state. We later found out that it was a holiday and that they became so drunk that they neglected the bridge in order to go dancing. That was kismet.

The second railway line wasn't difficult since we only had to cross a few kilometers further on. When we had already gone through, we noticed that we had come to a road that was full of German military. There were no woods nearby. We crawled into thick bushes and lay there a whole day until dark. We were lucky since we were only a few meters away from them. When it got dark we crossed the road and continued safely. We had only eighteen kilometers left to reach the Russian partisans.

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Aharon Ligumski and family

 

Four hours later we reached a village. It was already nine at night. A Russian patrol stopped us at the edge of the village and requested our documents. Going with us in the dark, he asked who we were. When we told him that we were Jews, he immediately returned my documents and took us into a house where he told the village elder to feed us, prepare a place for us to sleep, and see to it that he heat a bath for us in the morning. During all our wanderings we hadn't once gotten undressed. We ate and rested. In this zone we were able to travel freely by day because the village was filled with Russian partisans. All of the men had been mobilized and the women did everything on their own. Every home had to provide several partisans with food.

At ten, we were told to gather in a house and to go to the unit commander because they couldn't confirm anything for us on their own. This meant another forty-five kilometers. We were pleased that at least we could travel unafraid, free and not in hiding. We traveled twenty-five kilometers before night fell. We entered the home of the village elder who gave us a place to sleep. We ate, and the next day we again traveled until we came to the commander. We gave him our documents, told him about our adventures and asked that we be accepted as partisans. He asked if we were armed. We didn't have any arms and therefore had to go to staff headquarters in Melnikov, about seventy kilometers from there. We went there but they didn't allow us into staff headquarters. They simply told us that if we have no arms, then we couldn't be accepted because at the time there was a serious shortage of arms. Partisans were joining up by the thousands. Disappointed that we couldn't accomplish our goal, we meanwhile wandered through the village. We were able-bodied and were hired for all sorts of work and well fed. We worked in the fields, rode into the forests for wood, repaired boots, sewed caps and did everything that had to be done.

In this way we wandered for three months from village to village. It would have been good but the partisans didn't leave us alone. They said that while they were fighting, we were hiding out. We couldn't convince them that we hadn't been accepted because we didn't have arms. They simply told us to go and kill several Germans with our bare hands and take away their arms. The fact that we had no place to stay or go disturbed us very much. A commander even took us aside and told us that if he meets us again in the villages, he'll shoot us. At the time, they didn't need an excuse, especially if it was a Jew. Before this we had already approached all of the partisan brigades and had gotten the same answer. After somewhat appeasing this commander, he wrote us a letter for the brigadier, Melnikov. His brigade numbered about fifteen thousand people, including many Jews. He told us to personally deliver the letter. At first they didn't let us approach him, but with this letter we hoped we could actually go to him. We again had to travel forty-five kilometers, but this was our final journey and we set out.

The staff headquarters was deep in the forest and partisans guarded many of the homes. Three kilometers away, we were stopped and questioned every fifty paces until we got there. Melnikov was there but they told us that he wasn't. A soldier took the letter to hand over to him. A young lady came right out to us and we saw that she was Jewish. In Russian, she told us to enter. She was the brigadier's secretary. The staff commissar was also there. With tears in our eyes, we told them of our bitter fate. We wanted to fight, but only as partisans. Our words moved them and we were accepted as partisans. They sent us to a village where there was a Jewish unit of twenty who had survived the slaughter in Kurenitz and Krivichi. There we were given arms.

We patrolled a mountain top. The Germans were three kilometers from the mountain since the area was the right flank of the German advance. We had to be on constant guard because from that mountain we could see exactly where the Germans were headed.

A Russian commanded our Jewish unit. Every order was carried out. There were also six girls in our unit. They stood guard with their rifles and helped out in the kitchen. In this way, we Jews were by ourselves for five months.

We weren't far from Polotzk. When the Germans entered, the Russians torched the warehouse and armory nearby. After the partisans spread into the area, they would sneak in at night, bring the burned guns out and repair them until they were like new. There were many guns and in a short time all of the partisans were armed. Every night about thirty planes with arms would land and then carry off wounded partisans.

A month later, the Jewish unit was divided up among the Russian partisans. We were ordered to report to the Boide Swamps near Disne. My sister and I went together while our brother was in a different unit. He was quickly promoted to be an officer. Once, while on guard, they noticed that Germans had come up to a point almost a meter away from them. He barely managed to escape. There was a battle and he was lightly wounded in one leg. A week later we went off in the direction they told us to go, toward the Disne area. Riding our horses, we crossed the Disanke River.

In that zone there was still plenty to eat and that's why many partisans were sent there. Here, there began for us a chapter of constant battle with the Germans. The place was also terrible because of the peasants who had sided with the Germans. We had to be careful of every move.

The unit of eight, including my brother, moved up closer to observe the Germans. We had meanwhile stopped at some houses near the woods. Suddenly we heard that the entire unit had fallen into a trap. Only the commander escaped; three were immediately killed and three were seriously wounded. When I asked where my brother was, he told me that he was lying wounded in the field and couldn't be reached. Our partisans immediately entered the battle. My brother managed to crawl on his stomach about half a kilometer until he came closer to the woods. Of the rest of the unit only two remained alive, although seriously wounded. There was no hospital nearby but we had several nurses. We took up a position at another point. The wounded were sent to another place where there already was a makeshift hospital and a doctor. It didn't take long before there was another disturbance. It was winter and the wounded were taken on sleds into the Boide Woods. We again drove the Germans off and returned to our previous position. For a while it was quiet. The injured recuperated somewhat and went back to their previous tasks.

We got an order for all partisans to be on the ready. The Russians had beaten the Germans and since they were retreating through partisan territory, they had sent out a hundred thousand German troops with heavy armor and planes to wipe out the partisans. We retreated to the Boide Woods where there were huge swamps. We numbered about a thousand eight hundred eighty in three brigades. Shooting started and they began to surround the woods. At first the planes dropped leaflets calling for us to surrender. After five days, when we had nothing left to eat, the Germans surrounded the forest. A fierce battle took place. Blood ran like water and men died like flies. Those from Smolensk fought bravely and we were closer to death than to life. We finally found a way out. We ran through a swamp up to our necks in sludge for three kilometers. It was terribly cold. We threw everything away except for our guns and grenades, which we had to have with us.

The Germans meanwhile penetrated deeper into the forest. Dogs as big as horses led the way. Meanwhile we tramped through the muddy swamp and got away safely at the point where they couldn't imagine a human would be able to penetrate. After five kilometers we stopped. Here it was quieter. We had traversed it all in one night and we again had to cross the Disanke River, which was very wide at the time. We quickly made a raft of logs. In this way, exhausted, we stopped for a night near a forest.

In two days time we were given an order and also some good news. The Germans were fleeing and we were to pursue them. We were ordered to blow up the entire line from Vitbesk to Lapel in one night, so that the murderers would have nowhere to flee. So it was done. It felt as if the world were exploding. Then we went into the woods near the main roads so that we could take revenge on the Germans. It didn't take long. We began firing. They ran in a panic as if everything was too late for them. Then our unit saw the Red Army.

We turned the prisoners over to the regular Russian Army. In the last few days entire battalions had surrendered to us. The partisans were ordered to gather at a point near Pohost. We revenged ourselves as much as we were able, but it was still very little in exchange for the amount of our blood that had been shed. The partisans were quickly divided into different groups. The war continued. Some were sent right off to the front to fight again and some were allowed to make order in the towns. My sister (now in Argentina) and I remained to work in the shtetl Miory. Our brother Abraham was sent to the front. We worked there for about six months, until the war ended.

As soon as the war was over everyone ran back toto their homes, but we had nowhere to return. Only a pit remained, a pit containing a thousand Jews whose blood was still crying out. There were still many bandits circulating, murderers who had aided in the Holocaust. Unfortunately, we could no longer do anything. We just couldn't look again at the murderers, so we decided to leave the accursed land. Before leaving, we set up a monument and bade farewell to our dearest and most beloved who lay together in a common grave.

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Dunilovoitzers and Druiers

 

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1934

 

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Hachalutz

 

The 11th Yahrzeit of Hirshke Trotzky

The Jewish workers of Paris remember well the original and attractive figure of Hirshke Trotzky.

On a dark night on November 15, 1943, a battalion of SS, obviously told by an informer, encircled a Marquis (French underground) unit of Corez. There were eighteen combatants in the surprised group. Among them was Hirshke, his nephew Henri ( son of his brother, Alexander) and a number of other experienced partisans.

Ordered by the SS leaders to surrender, the courageous unit undertook an unequal battle rather than fall into the grasp of the murderers. They all died heroic deaths. Early the next morning, a young partisan photographed the eighteen fresh corpses, riddled with hundreds of bullets. A few days later, the photo calling for revenge was printed in a resistance newspaper and circulated among the population.

Hirshke was born on August 15, 1904 in a small shtetl not far from Vilna, named Dunilovichi. His father, a lawyer ( Aharon Trocki, perished in Dunilovichi), strove to give his children a higher education and sent him to a gymnasia. Hirshke quickly joined the revolutionary movement. At first he worked among the youth, bringing them his energetic and happy spirit. Later he went to work among the peasants (“KARAMADA”).

Due to his association with these groups, he was forced to immigrate to France, where he settled in Paris, working first as a housing construction laborer and later as a furniture polisher. Gaining the sympathy of his fellow workers, he demonstrated his abilities, this time in “syndicalism.” The Jewish and non-Jewish workers, especially the inhabitants of “Lila,” very well remember his loving and temperate nature. When the civil war in Spain broke out, he volunteered for the International Brigade and distinguished himself on the battlefields of Spain in the fight against fascism.

During the tragic years of the Nazi occupation, Hirshke naturally was to be found in the front ranks of the partisans. With the same good-natured smile and always ready to help his comrades, Hirshke fought again with gun in hand. He was a superb marksman who was able to kill scores of the Hitler bandits.

The simple and proud life of Hirshke, the virtuous laborer, the sincere human being, the unbowed warrior; his heroic death on the fields of Corez set an example for us.

We honor his memory!


Others reported information to Yad Vashem:

(Tzvi) Hirsch Trotzki was born to Pesakh Aharon and Ester in 1904 in Dunilovichi. He was married to Reina Todres and had one child, a fifteen-year-old girl named Sara. He made his residence in Paris, France and worked as a clerk. During the war, he was in Turenne, France. He later died in the Correze District of France in 1943. This information was provided by a Page of Testimony from his brother Aleksander Trotzki in May 22, 1955.

Hirsch Trocki was born in Dunilowicze, Poland in 1904. He was a worker and married. Prior to WWII he lived in Wilno, Poland. During the war was in Paris, France. Hirsch died in 1943 in France at the age of 39. This information is based on a Page of Testimony submitted by his acquaintance.

Hirsch Trotzki was born in 1904 in Dunilovichi. He was married and lived in Wilno, Poland. He was a worker and lived in Paris during the war. He died in France on October 15, 1943 at the age of thirty-nine. This information was provided by a Page of Testimony written by an acquaintance, Sabina Elzon.

Hirsch Trocki was born in Dunilowicze, Poland in 1904. Hirsch died in 1943 in Correze District, France. This information is based on a list of deportation from France found in the Le Memorial de la deportation des juifs de France, Beate et Serge Klarsfeld, Paris 1978.

Hirsch Trocki was born in August 15, 1904 in Dunilovichi, Poland. He died in 1943 in the Correze District of France. This information was taken from a list of deportation from France. This 1978 list came from Le Memorial de la deporation des juifs de France, Beate et Serge Klarsfeld in Paris.

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