Ernesta Ezra Menda and her sons in Bourgas

These are my aunt Ernesta Ezra Menda, nee Kalef, and her sons Haim (on the left) and Itzhak Menda. The photo was taken in Bourgas before they left for Israel in 1942.

My aunt got married to a rabbi in Bourgas. His name was Ezra Menda and he was a Greek citizen. They fled Bulgaria in 1942 after the District Governor of Burgas had warned them that they would be sent to a camp. So the family packed and left for Turkey in 1942 and from there to Israel. My aunt already had two children then. She didn't live a happy life in Israel and she divorced her husband. We used to write letters to each other and that's how I learned that. I told her that I would do anything possible to help her come back to Bulgaria if she wanted to, but she didn't. She stayed in Tel Aviv and later she died of leukemia. I loved this aunt of mine very much.

Her sons love Bulgaria. They have come to Bulgaria several times. Haim graduated in sociology and is a clerk in Gan and Itzhak is a fitter.