My brother Paul

This is a picture of my brother Paul, who was seven years older than me. He was born on April 18, 1910.

After Hitler had risen to power, he went to Holland, in order to get commercial practice.

Paul had a girlfriend in Holland: Regina Fränkel. She was born in Frankfurt, too.

After Paul had finished his commercial education, the Fränkel family hired him for their button trade “Butonia” – they produced and traded in buttons.

The Fränkel family left Frankfurt early. People believed that Holland was safe. But when the Germans came to Holland, it got dangerous. It was a terrible time.

The Fränkel family emigrated to England, and my brother and Regina managed to get visas for Cuba.

My brother knew somebody in Switzerland, who organized these visas in 1940, when Holland was already occupied by the Germans.

Otherwise they wouldn’t have been able to get out of Holland. When they were on the run, Regina got to know another man, whom she followed to the United States.

My brother went to Cuba alone. It was a difficult time for my brother. But he was young and happy to be safe.

At that time, one would take almost anything, just to get out. He wasn’t able to maintain contact with his family at the time.

From Cuba, Paul went on to the United States. There he signed up for the Dutch military, and that’s how he got Dutch Citizenship.

After the war he went back to Holland. He lived there and went back to working with the Fränkel family, this time together with their son. Later he even took over the button trade, and he was well off.

Paul was married twice. He had three children with his second wife Jetti: Gidon, Michael and Margalit. His wife was very pretty – her mother was Dutch and her father from Indonesia.

My husband and I often visited them in Holland: We were in Amsterdam for the first time in 1958.

That was also the first time we left Israel.