Shymon Sofar and his wife Pnina Sofar with French relatives

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  • Photo taken in:
    Rishon LeZion
    Year when photo was taken:
    1963
    Country name at time of photo:
    Israel
    Country name today:
    Israel

This is my brother Shymon Sofar (first from left) and his wife Pnina Sofar (in center) with our French relatives. The second on the right is our cousin sister Rachel. I remember no more names. This photo was taken in Rishon Le Ziyon in 1963.

My brother Shymy went to the University of Bucharest after finishing the lyceum in 1936. He never finished it due to persecution and abuse of Jews that started in Romania. Shymy was proud and independent. He had a fight with the Cuzists once and then he had to leave Bucharest for the fear of his life. He came home and said, 'I won't study there any longer. I'll go to Palestine. Palestine is my Motherland and I'll move there anyway'.

In 1938, when he was twenty, he moved to Palestine with other halutzim. There were 300 of them on the Greek boat 'Aspir'. They paid the captain and he took them on board in a Mediterranean post. The boat arrived in the harbor of Haifa, but the passengers weren't allowed to get off board. Palestine was under the British mandate and the Brits didn't accept Jews. They were at sea for three months with hardly any food or water before they managed to get off-board. From there they were sent to a quarantine camp.

When Shymy's dream came true and the Jewish state was established, Shymy took part in the war for independence in 1948, when the armies of five Arab states attacked Israel. Shymy got married before Israel was established. His wife, Pnina, arrived in Palestine from Poland with her parents at the age of eight. She got a medical education and worked as a cosmetologist. Later, she quit her job and became a housewife. They have no children. Shymy became a professional military. He participated in the Six-Day-War in 1967, and in the War on Judgment Day in 1973. He took part in four wars. They live in Rishon Le Ziyon.

Interview details

Interviewee: Polina Leibovich
Interviewer:
Natalia Fomina
Month of interview:
May
Year of interview:
2004
Kishinev, Moldova

KEY PERSON

Shymon Sofar
Jewish name:
Shymon
Occupation
before WW II:
University student
after WW II:
Military
Family names
  • Previous family name: 
    Sohis
    Reason for changing: 
    Assimilation
    Decade of changing: 
    1930

Other Person

Prima Sofar
Year of birth:
1930
Country name at time of birth:
Poland
Occupation
after WW II:
Cosmetologist, Housewife
  • Reason for changing: 
    Marriage
    Decade of changing: 
    1940

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