Pesia Dener

Pesia Dener
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This is my mother Pesia Dener, nee Gutman. This photo was taken in Falesti in the 1920s. My mother sent this photo to Argentina, to my father's sister whose name I don't know. After WWII our Argentinian relatives sent it to my sister Sarah in Israel since none of us had any family photographs left. My mother was born in the town of Yedintsy in the north of Bessarabia in 1892. My grandmother Esfir's brother Iosif Moldaver from Falesti raised my mother and I believed him to be my grandfather. They adored her and cared a lot for her. They didn't even send her to school and she had classes with visiting teachers at home. When it was time for her to go to grammar school, my mother continued her studies at home and passed all exams at Odessa Russian grammar school as an external student. She sang beautifully, played the piano and was great at embroidery. My mother got married at the age of 18. My parents' first son, my brother Yuzef, who was called Yuzik at home, was born in 1913; five years later my sister Sarah followed. I was born in December 1925 in Falesti where I lived for almost 16 years. My mother took care of the house and had a housemaid to help her around. Our housemaids were girls or women from nearby villages. My mother did the minor laundry herself and had a woman coming in to wash the bed sheets every three months. My mother did the cooking herself since she strictly followed the kashrut. She bought dairy products and poultry at the market and also shopped at stores. Of course, she bought live chickens and had them slaughtered by a shochet. We never mixed dairy and meat products and had special crockery for dairy and meat products. My mother made menus for each day, so that we had dairy products - for example, soup with milk or pancakes with cottage cheese - one day and meat dishes on the next: meat with prunes and chicken soup with farfelakh. My mother went to the synagogue on all Jewish holidays. On 28th June 1940, the Soviet rule began in Bessarabia. In 1941, on the night of 13th to 14th June, two officers wearing NKVD uniforms and two witnesses came to our home. They woke us up, searched our lodging and told us, 'You have 20 minutes to get ready and leave the place!' We were taken to the railway station. We were deported to Mogochin town, Molchanov district, Tomsk region in Siberia. There they declared that we were sentenced to 25 years in exile. In 1946 my mother died there, in Siberia.

Interview details

Interviewee: Esfir Dener
Natalia Fomina
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Chisinau, Moldova


Pesia Dener
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Mogochin, Tomsk region
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after WW II
before WW II:
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