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[Page 376]

Memorial Candles (cont.)

Bendersky Family
Top line (right to left): Fishel, Simcha, Nehama, Pinny, Nessya
Second line (from the right) seated: Booky


Haim Bendersky (Second from left)
Booky Bendersky on the right


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My uncle, Fishel Bendersky, was exiled by the Soviets to Siberia and he died there after great difficulties. His son Haim made Aliyah with the first Maccabia. He died here after a serious illness and was buried in Netanya. My father`s second brother, David Pinny, was exiled to Central Asia. There, he and his wife contracted a disease and they died in great pain and hunger. My father`s sister, Nessya,, was unable to flee and was slaughtered by the Nazis together with other Jews of Bendery. Her burial place is unknown.

Pinny Bendersky`s son, known as Leib, also came to Eretz Israel with the first Maccabia. He died here.

My mother`s family – the Butzlnis- were killed in the Holocaust. They were Mordehai Butzlin (the son of one brother), Yitzhak and Yaakov Butzlin (the sons of another brother).

May this article be a memorial to all those I mentioned.

Shmuel Ben David, Haifa


Row one: Haya-Rivka, Ben-Zion; His son Nahum-Dov was a rabbi in Pshetrova and a ritual slaughterer in Odessa.
Row two: Ziporah, Ben-Zion`s daughter, Nahum-Dov Gerstein, son-in-law of Ben-Zion
Larger picture left: Gil Carmel, soldier in IDF, great-grandson of Ben-Zion, grandson of David Carmel.


The Family of Ben-Zion Shohet (Berdichevsky)

Ben-Zion was the son of Haim-Hirsh, a cantor in Bendery. He was known as a young genius and everyone expected much from him. He was married at the age of 18 to Haya-Rivka, the daughter of the ritual slaughterer and cantor Eliezer Kishinovsky from Tiraspol.

Ben Zion was a Hassid and a pious man. During the times of the Tsar he was able to obtain the release from the army of several young Jews.

During World War I many members of his family lost their fortune and he had to help them.

He led services in the synagogue of Rabbi Yossy Shaposnick in the Citadel of the Hassidim. He also was a member of the Way of Life (Orach Haim). They remained covered in their prayer shawls after morning services and studied Gmara together.

During World War II, before the Nazis came, he was able to flee to Tashkent where he died of hunger.

We, his son, his daughter, his grandchildren and great-grandchildren remember our parent who shone the way for us.

May their souls be bound among the souls of the living.


In Memory of My Dear Parents

My mother, Pessia, was born in Lithuania and my father, Israel-Shmuel, was born in Ukraine. After their marriage they came to Bendery and set up a household. They did honest work and raised their sons and daughters to be honest and hard-working. They were always involved in bringing up their children and to prepare them for life.

World War II hurt them badly. They wandered from one place to another, through Stalingrad and Caucasus. After the war, they returned to destroyed Bendery where there were no Jews left. They were broken in body and spirit and tried hard to restart their lives. They died a few years later.

Shabtai Blei


[Page 378]

Zeev (Volodya) Berman
He was the third son of Shebt'l Berman. In his youth he was sent to study in a Chabad yeshiva in Gizhin, but he interrupted his studies and returned to Bendery. He learned mechanics and driving, unacceptable in his family. He moved to Hotin and worked there as a chauffeur in a sugar factory.

In 1923 he made Aliyah and worked as a stone mason in a work unit in Jerusalem. He then moved to the Galilee to work on farms in Melhamia. From there he went to Petah Tikva where he worked in agriculture and packing. He built a house in Kfar Maas and planted a vineyard and a citrus grove. He worked independently with his wife and children.

He was active in Haganah and was in charge of guarding his village and their ammunition. During World War II he enlisted in the British army and served under difficult circumstances in Egypt.

He was an honest and loyal man and he worked hard to his last day. He died in 1955 while working in the citrus grove. He left behind his wife, two married daughters and a son – Yitzhak. Although he is employed by the electric company he still runs his father`s farm. (This son was injured in the three wars of our country).


Officer Nahum Goldman
In his youth Nahum studied in Bendery and made Aliyah at the age of 18 with his father, Yosef and his brother Yaakov. They reached Eretz Israel on foot walking from Beirut and they settled in Petach Tikva. At first, Nahum worked in agriculture and later he was part of the border patrol. In 1921 he was promoted. He served everywhere; from Metula to Nitzana (it was called Oudja el Hafir during the mandate).

In 1925 he transferred to the police force and served as an officer in Petach Tikva. In 1928, during a labor demonstration demanding work for the Jews in Petach Tikva citrus groves, he defended them. He was then punished by being transferred, with his family, to Beer Sheva. In those days Beer Sheva was an Arab town without a single Jew. He served there for two years and was again transferred to Jaffa and from there to Rehovot and Ramle. Finally, he was appointed assistant to the late officer Schiff in Tel Aviv. He was by his side in the action in which, tragically, they both lost their lives.

A group of police officers, Jewish and English, headed by officers Schiff and Goldman, were searching a roof storage area in Tel Aviv. They had received a telephone tip about it. The group, including the two Jewish officers, went to the roof of the building. A mine was hidden on the roof. It exploded and many were injured. Among them were the two Jewish officers who were killed.


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Eventually, it was discovered that this was an action of revenge by one of the underground groups. The two officers had investigated a case of bank robbery (Bank Hapoalim).

In his lifetime, Officer Goldman helped the Jewish policemen who had to work with Arabs and the British. He did all he could to defend the Jewish population and his superiors were always suspicious of him.

He left behind a wife and three daughters.

Those I Mourn

During my lengthy wanderings in Russia after the Holocaust, I reached my hometown- Bendery. I had left there a part of my family – my father and a brother. I was hoping to find them among the living. This was my dream. My pain was great! Not only were they no longer alive, but I could not even find their graves. I began to question those who remained in town and those who returned after the evacuation. This is what I discovered:

My father, Motti Greenberg, had always resided in Bendery. He worked as a cashier in the flour mill owned by L. Blank. He was well known as a loyal and honest man. He was quite observant. He refused to leave town after it was evacuated by the Russians who had been the first to enter. In 1941, the Romanian-Nazis, may their names be erased, returned to town. My late father and my little brother, who stuck to him, were taken to the citadel. There they were shot to death together with all the other Jews who stayed in town. They were buried in a communal grave, but its place is unknown. There is no list of those who were killed. The story was told to me by the non-Jews who lived near the citadel.

This is how my saintly, honorable, pious father died together with his Jewish brothers whose fate was bound together with his. He loved his people and their fate hurt him, too.

God of revenge, revenge them!

This was written by the son who
remained and made Aliyah from Russia.
His sons Yitzhak and David
Haya Rachel Greenberg
R. Mordehai Greenberg and his son who fell in the Holocaust


[Page 380]

Etel Gornshtein
Haim Leib
Our father, Haim-Leib Gornshtein, was born to his father, Hersh-Zvi Gornshtein in Safed, Eretz Israel in 1875. Our grandfather, an observant man, a keeper of Mitzvoth, brought up his son according to Jewish tradition and with love for his people. When our father was seven years old the family returned to Russia and settled in Bendery. My father studied in a Heder there – as was the custom. When he grew up he succeeded in obtaining, due to his good character, the good will of the Railroad Company. He was appointed the painting contractor of the line from Bendery to Reni. Our father continued his work even after the Romanian rule, up to the Holocaust.

He did not only work to feed his family, but he also volunteered in the community. He was one of the first supporters of the founding of the Schwartzman Hebrew High School. Our brother, Yosef, was one of its first students.

Our mother, Etel, was born in Tiraspol, near Bendery. She excelled as a homemaker and a devoted mother. She instructed her children in the proper way. When the Holocaust began, my parents went, with others from Bendery, to Central Asia. They lived there until the Soviet authorities decided to return everyone to their previous homes.

My mother died in 1944 on the way back. She was buried in Alexandrovka, District of Kirovgrodesk. Our father continued alone. He lived in Bendery, but he missed his homeland, Eretz Israel. In 1953 he was among the first to be allowed by the Soviets to immigrate. Our father arrived in Israel and found there his daughter Ida, married to D. Drobetsky. She had made Aliyah many years earlier.

Our father lived to a ripe old age. He died in 1961.

May the souls of our dear parents be among the souls of the living!

Their daughter Ida and their son Yosef (and Fuma)


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