Mimi-Matilda Petkova with her sisters Veneta Alhalel and Liza Peneva during the Holocaust

Mimi-Matilda Petkova with her sisters Veneta Alhalel and Liza Peneva during the Holocaust

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This photo was taken in Vidin in the winter of 1942. The photo was taken during the Holocaust, when we weren?t allowed to leave home and our house was confiscated. We lived in sheds next to the house, which previously were hen-houses. My mother painted it with lime. The police chief lived in our house. He was called Ivan the Beast. From left to right: Veneta Alhalel, nee Pizanti, then Liza Peneva, nee Pizanti and I. At that time my father was in Vidin prison as a political prisoner. My sister Veneta was born on 6th August 1925. Veneta finished junior high school. She was a seamstress. She married Haim Alhalel. Veneta always had a very sick heart. I remember that I waited for a whole night and half a day for her daughter Sonya to be born. Then I took her from the maternity home and brought her home as if she were a child of mine. Liza, my other sister, was born on 22nd January 1922. She finished her secondary education in Vidin high school. She had a college education and was a pharmacist. She married Tsvetan Penev. Liza has two sons, one of them is Fredi - named after my mother, and the other - Valentin. Both my sisters spoke Ladino. Liza knew Italian. They also lived in Vidin. When Liza married, she went to live in Byala Slatina and then I also went there to study in the technical college. I lived at her place for a while. But when I married too, everyone came to Sofia: my parents, Liza, Tsvetan, Veneta and Haim.
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Mimi-Matilda Petkova