Imro and Ladislav Reitman with Alica Reitmanova

This is a photograph from Slepcany, my father's birthplace. It was taken in 1937. My mother, Alica Reitmanova, nee Wassermanova is in the middle, my father’s brother Laci Reitman is the one in the soldier’s uniform and on the right is his brother Imro Reitman.

My parents came from the same region. My father was born in Slepcany, my mother in Dolne Slazany. They said my father had to jump over the stream to meet my mother. My mother comes from a relatively rich farmer's family with seven children. My father was born into a poor Jewish family. My parents married in May 1937 and they lived in Zlate Moravce, where my father had his wholesale company, along with his father and brothers. They weren't Orthodox Jews.

Laci survived the war by hiding in Hungary. In 1951 he fled from Czechoslovakia under very dangerous circumstances. He illegally crossed the border in Komarno and was smuggled, along with his five-year-old son Ivan, to Vienna on a cargo ship. Uncle Laci died five years ago, his wife, Aunt Klari lives in Toronto and their son Ivan lives in Los Angeles.

Imro also survived the war by hiding in Hungary. He lives in Toronto now. Unfortunately he suffers from Alzheimer disease. He is 89 and mentally in a very bad condition. His wife was called Magda. She survived Auschwitz.