Marie Synkova and her sister Anna Schwelbova

This is my mother Marie Synkova, née Steinerova, and her younger sister Anna Schwelbova, née Steinerova. The picture was taken in a photo studio in Kolin, as is written on the photograph. I think that this might have been still before World War I. Here I'd say my mother is about ten to twelve years old.

My mother was born on 9th August 1898 in Kolin - she was four years younger than my father - and died before the war, in 1933, of cancer. As I then found out, her father also died of cancer, a year before her. I don't even know what her religious inclinations were like, I was six when she died - it was at the end of Grade One - she'd already been ill for the last two years.

My mother had one sister, named Anna Schwelbova. She was born on 10th December 1904. She was married about three times, and with one of her husbands, some Neumann, she had a son, Zdenek, who was two years older than I. I think that Neumann, but that I'm not sure of, maybe it was Schwelba, was a barber or hairdresser, something like that. Anna, her son and her mother, my grandmother Hermina Steinerova, went onto the transport already at the beginning of 1942, and maybe didn't even go through Terezin, but straight away somewhere further on. I think that they died somewhere in Poland.