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[Page 453]

Photographs of Our Martyrs

Translated by Howard I. Schwartz, PhD


Rabbi Yehuda Gordon, z”l
Last head rabbi of the Mlynov Community (kehilla)

[Page 454]

Rabbi Yehuda-Leib Lamdan[2]   Moshe Lamdan (the poet's brother)
murdered by Denikin's
[1] gangs in 1919
Motel Litvak and his wife Riva [Lamdan] z”l[3]

[Page 455]

Fallen While Defending in Israel

Hanoch Goldseker, z”l[4]   Tzvi Linkes, z”l   Yisrael Halperin z”l[5]


Fallen While Defending in Israel

Yochai Givol
(from the line of Rachel Shapovnik)
? Mandelkern, z”l
Zelig Pichniuk, z”l
Herschel Grin, z”l
Abraham Goldseker, may he be distinguished for a long life

[Page 456]

Mr. Ben-Tzion Meren, z”l (the teacher) his wife[7] and daughter Seril, z”l  
The teacher Shurin and his wife, z”l

[Page 457]

The teacher Motel Chizik [also spelled Tzizik] and his family.[8] May his son Meir (left) be distinguished for a long life. The son Moshe (on the right) died in Israel.
Original courtesy of Hagar Lipkin
The teacher Ben-Tzion Gruber and his family, z”l [left].[9] Chaim Naishtein[10] with his family, z”l [center]. Hersh-Leib Margulis (first from the right), [next to him] his sister Raisel [Naishtein (nee Margulis)] and their brother Efraim (is in Russia) [and not present in the photo]

[Page 458]

Lipa Halperin died in Israel[11]
[Lipa's mother] Rivkah [Shrentzel] Halperin (seated) and [her sister] Sorke (Shrentzel) Gertnich z”l
Moshe Gertnich,[12] his wife Sorke [Shrentzel], their son Shmuel, their daughter Faiga [bottom left], and to be distinguished for a long life, Yosef (Koiftze) [Ganon]
[Lipa's maternal grandfather] Mordechai Meir Shrentzel z”l[13]

[Page 459]

A postcard sent from the Mlynov ghetto by Rivkah Halperin
to Lipa Halperin in the Land [of Israel], via Portugal


Editor's footnotes:
  1. Referring to the army of Anton Denikin, (1872-1947) a Russian Lieutenant General in the Imperial Russian Army (1916) who then led White forces against the Bolsheviks in the Civil War. During that period, the White Army was associated with a percentage of the attacks on 50,000 Jews who perished in pogroms and was responsible for propaganda campaigns against the Jews whom they associated with communism. Return
  2. The father of the poet, Yitzhak Lamdan. Return
  3. The parents of Yosef Litvak, one of the contributors to this volume. Return
  4. Hanoch (19301948), a Shoah survivor, was son of Yankel, son of Moshe, son of Abraham Holtzeker. After his escape, he joined his sisters on Kibbutz Negba. He died on May 5, 1948 in the battle for Negba against the Egyptian army. Return
  5. Israel was son of Lipa Halperin, born April 11, 1950. He fell in battle as a fighter in a commando unit during the War of Attrition (June 11, 1970). Return
  6. Yochai Givol's mother, Rachel Shapovnik, was born in Mlynov, and appears in the photos on page 9 in this volume and page 460 as a member of the Zionist Youth Group, Hashomer Hatzair. Rachel's father, Abisch Shapovnik, was born in Luck in 1882 and married Khaia Fridman. The family came to live in Mlynov by the 1920s. Return
  7. Ben-Tzion Meren was the father of Boruch Meren who contributed to this volume. Ben-Tzion was married to Miriam Goldseker, daughter of Hersh Goldseker. Boruch tells the story about his father becoming a teacher in “The Treasure That Ran Out,” and writes a poem about him in My Father Ben-Tzion z”l.Return
  8. Motel (Mordechai) Chizik (or Tzizik) was born in 1882 and married a woman named Rut. Their daughter Luba Leah stayed in Mlynov with her parents and they perished in the liquidation. Their son, Moshe, married Mlynov-born Rosa Berger (sister of Aaron Harari) in Palestine after they both made aliyah. Moshe (19091959) tragically died of a poisonous snake bite in 1959. His brother Meir (19071996) was drafted in the Polish army in 1922 and made aliyah after his brother in the 1930s; they both lived in Kibbutz Beit Alfa. Meir married and had five children. Return
  9. The people in this photo were all Mervits residents and all related. A short reflection by Eliyahu Gelman in this volume called “The Two of Them” (p. 241) provides some memories about Ben-Tzion Gruber and Hersch Leib Margulis, who both left Mlynov for larger cities but then returned to settle down and raise families.
    On the left is Ben-Tzion Gruber (19001942), the son of Yosef Moshe Gruber and Shifra (Teitelman). He was the brother of Sonia and Rachel Teitelman who are both survivors and contributors to this volume. Ben-Tzion's wife was Gitel Tovah (Margulis) which explains why the other Margulises are in the photo. Ben-Tzion and Gitel had a daughter Yehudit. All of them perished in Lutzk.
    On the right are Gitel's siblings, Hersch-Lieb Margulis and Reizl (Margulis) Naishtein (19101942), who are also listed among the martyrs of Mervits (p. 442). Based on Yad Vashem records, their brother Efraim Margulis (19201941) was in Kiev before WWII and thus is not in the photo. He served in the Soviet army and was reported as missing in action in July 1941. Return
  10. Chaim Naishtein (19021942) (or Naisztein, Neinstein) is third from the right in the photo. He married Reizl (Margulis). Based on Yad Vashem records, he was son of Moshe and a textile merchant. In the Mervits list of martyrs (p. 443) Chaim and Reizl have a son, presumably the young man standing in front of Chaim. The martyr list indicates Chaim's sister was Reizl (Naishtein) Gonik. She, her husband and son perished as well.
    It is conceivable that this Chaim Naishtein was first cousin to Bernard Neinstein, the well-known Chicago politician. Bernard's father Paul Neinstein (18811949) married Eva (Chava) Berger from Mlynov and migrated to Chicago in 1910. He arrived under the name of “Pinchus Neustein” was listed as a tailor, and was headed when he first arrived to a cousin Moshe Fishman in Baltimore who was from Mlynov/Mervits. Pinchus Neustein's manifest appears to indicate he was born in Mervits. Paul's son Bernard Neistein went on to be the well-known Chicago politician. Return
  11. Lipa Halperin (1907-1969) was one of five children of Israel Halperin and Rivkah (Shrentzel also spelled Shrentzil). The family had a haberdashery in Mlynov. Growing up, Lipa was involved in the Zionist Youth Groups and he made aliyah in 1937. The rest of his family perished. Lipa was on the Book Committee for this volume and contributed a number of essays recalling his childhood memories including “The Mill,” and “When I Was A Lad.Return
  12. Moshe Gertnich (or Gertnikh) (1900-1942) married Sara (Shrentzel) (1906-1942). Their son Yosef (called Kuftzia and Ganon) made aliyah and contributed the essay “Memories of Home,” 262-263 in this volume. Return
  13. Mordechai Meir Shrentzel was the father of Rivkah [Shrentzel] Halperin and Sura [Shrentzel] Gertnich. Lipa credits this grandfather with the story about how the Ikva got its name in his essay, “The Mill.” Return
  14. The postcard was written by Lipa's mother, Rivkah Halperin to Lipa in Mandate Palestine. It is the last postcard he received. It poorly written German and appears to be a translation from Yiddish to evade censorship. Noone knows how the postcard was sent out of Portugal. The postcard is dated July 7, 1942. It reads, “We received your letter from January 28th, 1942. We thank you. Our whole family is healthy. We all live in our house. Your three sisters and your brother work in town. Father and I are at home. Write to us at the previous address. We greet Tola and the little son. R.H.” I'd like to thank Lipa's daughter, Miriam Aharoni, for the postcard's background and help with the translation as well as Leah Heymann and Viviane Heymann-Knops for their help translating the old German/Yiddish. Return


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