Photo taken in:LvovYear when photo was taken:1940Country name at time of photo:USSRCountry name today:Ukraine
This is the photo of me and my family. In center is my mother. Between my mother and me is my brother Wilhelm. The photo was taken in 1940 in Lwow. I don’t remember exactly who took it.
We come from Lwow. Mother's name was Cywia, her family name Hamer [1895 - 1943]. She came from Scielisko Nowe, a small town near Lwow [ca. 15 km from Lwow]. She had three sisters and a brother. Mom was a blond, but she used to wear a wig. She had a lot of work at home, since the family was large. Seven children. I was the eldest child in the family. I had four brothers and two sisters. The second one in a row was Wilhelm [1920 - 1943], 2 years younger than me. Then there was Anszel [1922 - 1943]. When the fourth son was born, I asked to call him Szalem [1924 - 1943]. I suggested this name for him because at some point there were some misunderstandings between my parents, and Szalem means peace. After Szalem there was Michael - Michas [1926 - 1943]. Out of the two sisters, one - Cecilia [1932 - 1943], was the youngest in the family, and the second - Ania [from Anna, 1923 - 1943], was between Wilhelm and Anszel, I think. Cecilia's name was similar to Mother's name, but a bit different, because among Jews you don't give a child the name of the closest members of the family for as long as they are alive. There were about 2 year gaps between us. Boys went to cheder. Girls were home-schooled. Father mainly taught them to read in Hebrew. He taught them prayers and blessings. And Mother coached them in matters regarding women's duties.
I was born in Lwow, 15th July 1918. My name was Mosze, they used to call me Miszka. Wilhelm was an awful rascal. He kept playing hooky. There were no cars then, just horse carriages. Wilek would get to know the coachmen, other rascals, and was happy when they let him drive such a horse cart, and happiest when they let him ride a horse. There were horrible quarrels about this hooky-playing at home. When Wilek finished the elementary school, Father sent him to learn a profession, but in the end Brother went to a conservatory because he was musically talented. He had a superb strong voice.
Wilek, as I already said, was a bad rascal as a young boy and used to hang around with coachmen, which turned out useful when he got to the camp. He worked as a coachman. He also got help from friends from the sports club Hasmonea that we both had belonged to. People were trying to talk him into escaping from the camp. In the end he decided to do that, and began preparing documents and looking for a place for himself and for the youngest one - Michas. When everything was almost ready, one day he came home from work and the youngest brother was gone. And then he decided to stay in the camp. He died with the rest of my family in 1943. People told me that the Germans had taken them.