Freda

Birthdate: 6 Oct 1937

Place: Widze, Poland

Freda was born and raised in Poland. Her father was a retailer, her mother a teacher. Following the Russian invasion from the east, and shortly before the Germans invaded her town of Widze from the west, local antisemitic thugs ('riff-raff') lined up ten prominent members of the Jewish community and killed them. Freda’s father was one of those ten. Her mother was last seen in the Vilna ghetto (Vilnius, Lithuania). 

Freda herself was taken in and hidden by a Polish family who wanted to return an earlier kindness, Freda's family having hidden some of her's from the communists. After the war, Freda was rejoined with her sister, who had been fighting as a partisan. She later emigrated to New Zealand, settling in Auckland.

(Original video material courtesy of the Auckland Jewish Oral History Group)

Germans And Russians Invade Poland Family Displaced Father Murdered

Explore this theme further: War-time Terror

The invasion of Poland in September 1939 marked the beginning of the Second World War and the beginning of Nazi domination and terror throughout Europe. The German army marched into Poland from the West on 1st September 1939 after having signed a non-aggression pact with the Soviet Union a week earlier (the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact) and the Soviet army marched into Poland on 17thth October, after which the two countries divided their respective sides of Poland between them. September from the East. The invasion and occupation of Poland lasted until 6th October, after which the two countries divided their respective sides of Poland between them... >> more