Dobre Rozenbergene

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This is what I, Dobre Rozenbergene, looked like after the war. This picture was taken in Jurbarkas in 1946 right after my return from the concentration camp to our native town.

In July 1945 Aunt Leya and I came to Kaunas. I was yearning to go back to my native town and in a while my aunt took me to Jurbarkas. Our house wasn’t destroyed, but it was occupied by Lithuanians, and we had to wait for it to be vacated. I was sheltered by our neighbor Abu Fales. He was married. He and his family, his wife Chiena and their children, remained in the occupation. His loved ones perished, but Abu was miraculously rescued by local Lithuanians. Abu treated me like his own daughter. I stayed with him for a couple of months and could stay there as if I was his daughter. He married for the second time. His second wife was Miriam. She also lost her family. They suggested adopting me. I was seventeen. I loved and remembered my parents, and couldn’t betray the memory of them. I understood that I had to start a new adult life.

All happened almost at once. The house was vacated and I was summoned to the municipal ispolkom and given the permission to live in our house. I still wonder why they didn’t accommodate anyone with me as the house was large. At that time the son of my parents’ good friends, Sholom Ruvim Rozenbergas, came back from the lines. I had known him very well before the war, but since he was five years older than me, I never used to have common interests with him, as there was quite a big gap between us in my childhood. Now, as the two of us were lonely, we were attracted to each other. First, we had recollections that bound us, then we fell in love with each other. In the middle of 1946 we got our marriage registered at the regional marriage register. Of course, both of us wanted to be wed under a chuppah, but there was neither a synagogue nor a rabbi in Jurbarkas. During the occupation Fascists made Jews destroy the synagogue with their own hands, stone by stone, and then they shot them on that spot.

Interviewee

Dobre Rozenbergene