The last single Journey: Westerbork-Auschwitz

Sign

One of the cruel jokes the Nazis played on their victims was giving them hope. Like a railway sign indicating a return journey that was never to be. Only empty trains returned ready to pick up more victims like lambs led to the slaughter.

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On September 3,1944 the last transport by train from Westerbork Transit Camp to Auschwitz took place.

Westerbork

Between July 15 ,1942 and September 13,1944 a total of 99 trains had left Westerbork for either Auschwitz,Sobibor,Theresienstadt and Bergen Belsen.

On the September 3rd transport 1019 victims were transported to Auschwitz. A journey which would take 3 days. Even before they reached Auschwitz they endured hell, because they were cramped in cattle cars, quite literally like cattle. There were no toilets, barely any food or water, nowhere to sleep. Some would die even before they reached their final destination.

What makes this transport special is because of one family, A Father,mother and 2 daugthers, only the father would eventually survive. This family was the Frank Family.

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Anne and Margot Frank had one more journey to make on 28 October they were selected to be transported to Bergen-Belsen, where both girls died. Otto and Edith Frank remained in Auschwitz but Edith eventually died of starvation in January 1945.

Frank Family

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Anne and Margot Frank

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I often add words in the titles of my blog to describe parts of the contents of the blog. In this case I don’t have to do that because everyone knows the story of Anne Frank and to a lesser extend that of her older sister Margot.

On the 3rd of September 1944 they were deported from Westerbork to Auschwitz.

But on October 30, 1944, as the Russians advanced into Poland, many of the female prisoners of Auschwitz were deported to Bergen-Belsen in northern Germany. Margo and Anne Frank were among those forced to make the trip, but their mother, Edith, was left behind.Both girls died in Bergen-Belsen.

One of the saddest aspects is that the date of their death isn’t really known, it is assumed it was in February 1945 but the exact date is not known. This may sound like it is not important and maybe it isn’t but especially when it comes to Margot it isn’t know if she was 18 or 19 when she died, or did she die on her birthday 16 February. To us this means nothing but as a Father myself I could understand these are things Otto Frank would have like to know, because it would be important to a parent.

It really is unfathomable that these 2 young women died not because they were hardened criminals, or had a rare disease, or  were planning a military coup. No the only reason they died was because they were Jewish.

Below are some pictures of the two Frank sisters.

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At school

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Anne,Margot and a proud dad, Otto.

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The Frank family, Margot, Otto, Anne, and Edith, shortly before going into hiding

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I so hope that no teenage diary like Anne Frank’s diary has to be published again.I also hope that those who use Anne Frank’s memory and pictures as sick jokes will read this and look into the eyes of both girls and then look in the eyes of their own wives,daughters,nieces, or grand children and realize it could have been them.