Shlima Goldstein with her daughter Ella Denisova and granddaughter Dina

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This is me with my daughter Ella and granddaughter Dina, at my home in Kishinev. My husband Dmitriy Goldstein took this photo, when my daughter and granddaughter were visiting us in 2003.

My daughter, Ella, studied well at school. After finishing school she decided against entering a college. Anti-Semitism was strong in those years and a Jewish girl had no chance to enter a higher educational institution unless she bribed the officials, but we had no money for bribes. Ella went to work at a computation center in a design institute. At that time the first computers were commissioned and Ella maintained them. She went to a resort in Odessa where she met Vladimir Denisov, a Russian guy from Moscow. He fell in love with her. He visited us in fall and then began to visit us frequently. They got married and my daughter moved to Moscow where Vladimir had an apartment. Ella's husband was a great metal artist, a jeweler. He worked with precious metals, and in the Soviet times the state had a monopoly for the manufacture and treatment of jewelry, and any private business in this regard was forbidden.

Most likely, their neighbors reported on my son-in-law and one night, when my daughter was in the maternity hospital, he was arrested. The apartment was searched and whatever belongings they had was retained. Vladimir was allowed three months of delay till Ella had the baby. This was their second child. Their son Denis was born in 1979. In 1982 Dina was born. At the trial the attorney managed to have the verdict of deportation to distant areas. My daughter had to raise two children alone. My husband and I worked overtime to send her whatever we could earn. I could never afford to go to the Caucasus or Crimea on vacation. We could only afford local resorts where we could go for free. I sent my savings to my daughter.

I dreamt of the sea and resorts where my friends went, but I comforted myself that I felt well wherever with my beloved husband at all times, and this is true. Vladimir returned a few years later and began to feel jealous about Ella, he even hurt her. Though Ella had waited for her husband for a few years, she lost her patience and applied for a divorce. They got a divorce. Ella didn't want to return to Kishinev. She had a nice apartment after her divorce and she worked as a technician in a design institute. Ella only asked us to take Dina to live with us. She was four, when she came to Kishinev. My husband and I were happy and thought that we would have another daughter. I worked and managed to raise a nice girl. Dina lived with us for twelve years and we hoped that she would never leave us. But then something that nobody expected happened: the break-up of the USSR, and it became difficult for the Russian-speaking girl to study here.

All Russian schools were closed; there were only Moldovan schools left. She didn't know the language. We also lost our savings like many other people. When Dina turned 16, she moved to Moscow. She graduated from a hairdresser's school. Now she is a professional hairdresser. She is married, but has no children as yet. Denis studies in a college and dates a nice girl. They will be married soon. My daughter has also found her happiness. She remarried. Her second husband is Russian. His name is Sergey. I didn't ask his surname since Ella kept her family name Denisova.

Interview details

Interviewee: Shlima Goldstein
Zhanna Litinskaya
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Chisinau, Moldova


Shlima Goldstein
Jewish name:
Year of birth:
City of birth:
Country name at time of birth:
before WW II:
Manual laborer
after WW II:
Master confectioner
Family names
  • Previous family name: 
    Year of changing: 
    Reason for changing: 

Other Person

Ella Denisova
Jewish name:
Year of birth:
City of birth:
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after WW II:
Computer operator

Additional Information

Also interviewed by:
Survivors of the Shoah Visual History Foundation
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