Jakov Kalef at his wedding

Jakov Kalef at his wedding

This is my granduncle Jakov Kalef, my paternal grandmother's brother, at his wedding. From left to right are: Mosa - Moric Kalef, the bride Lenka Kalef (nee Almozlino), Jakov and an unknown girl. The photo was taken in the Atelje Konig in Belgrade.

I suppose they married in Belgrade. The Kalef family has lived a long time, 100 or 200 years in Serbia. Most of them married here. Moric was a pharmacist. I don't know what happened to him in the war but he didn't survive.

My grandmother Matilda was the pillar of the family. She rented out the family apartments and maintained the stores. Her older brother, Granduncle Jakov, helped her. We lived right next to each other, number three and number five Gospodar Jovanova. He took care of her and our family. It was as if he was our grandfather. Granduncle Jakov was on the board of the Jewish community. He was a cantor in the synagogue. Granduncle was involved in Jewish communal life and he kept my father and grandmother informed about everything. Because we were like one family and he was the head of the family. In fact, Jakov and Grandmother were the heads.

In 1941 they took away some of my relatives before they came to us and told us to leave: for instance, David and Mile Kalef, my granduncle Yakov's sons. David and Mile Kalef were picked up for these actions to clean the destruction from the bombing of Belgrade on 6th April. At one point they came home and then after that they never appeared again. I don't know what they talked about when they came home. We were already hidden. Mother told us that for some time they still came. David and Mile's mother, Lenka Kalef, poor woman, even went to the construction sites where they were cleaning and sometimes brought them some food to eat, until they took her away too.

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