Benno Redisch- What could have been!

I wish I could tell you that this picture was used to have a good laugh at my history teacher Benno Redisch. That the picture was handed to us by his wife , to use in a presentation of his 10th anniversary as a teacher. But he was not my teacher.

I wish I could tell you that this was given to me by my boss’s wife. And that we used it on January 13,1989 for his 50th birthday celebration. That we according to good Dutch tradition made a doll or figurine called Abraham, (according to Dutch tradition all men when they reach the age 50 they see Abraham. I believe it is from the biblical Abraham). We glued the picture on the doll. to use it as his face, as a joke.But he was not my boss.

I wish I called tell you that Benno was the owner of the bakery who made my wedding cake. But he never owned a bakery.

I wish I could tell you that when I hurt my back, Benno was the surgeon who fixed me. But Benno was not a surgeon.

I wish I could tell you that one day we had a burst pipe in our apartment and when I called my plumber Benno, he arrived 5 minutes later and fixed the problem. But he was not a plumber.

I wish I could tell you Benno lived to age 10, but he didn’t.

I wish I could tell you Benno lived to age 9, but he didn’t.

I wish I could tell you Benno lived to age 8, but he didn’t.

I wish I could tell you Benno lived to age 7, but he didn’t.

I wish I could tell you Benno lived to age 6, but he didn’t.

I wish I could tell you Benno lived to age 5, but he didn’t.

Benno was murdered in Sobibor aged 4.

He was born in Amsterdam on January 13,1939 and murdered on June 4,1943 in Sobibor.

Benno was denied a life. We were denied his life.

Source

https://www.joodsmonument.nl/nl/page/131233/benno-redisch

It’s their birthday today, but they were murdered before the age of 6.

I was going to do a piece on Nora Italiaander. She would have celebrated her 80th birthday today, but she was murdered on June 4,1943 in Sobibor. She was just aged 2.

The picture above is of her death notification issued on the 11th of June 1947, 4 years after her death.

But like Nora there were more children who were born on September 26 and they only got to celebrate a few birthdays. They were murdered before they were six. Below are just the names ,date of birth ,place of death and date of death. Sometimes it is harrowing enough just to see the raw data. All you really need to know is that they were children murdered for no reason.

Emma Reina Kalker-Born September 26,1940. Murdered in Auschwitz November 9,1942 -Age 2

Anna Neeter-Born September 26,1940. Murdered in Sobibor June 4, 1943-Age 2 The exact same dates as Nora Italiaander.

Helene Scholte-Born September 26,1940.Murdered in Auschwitz October 27 ,1942 -Age 2.

Louis van der Velde-Born September 26,1938. Murdered in Auschwitz February 11 ,1944 -Age 5.

Henri Andriesse-Born September 26,1938.Murdered in Auschwitz October 12 ,1942 -Age 4.

Philip Salomon Witteboon-Born September 26,1937.Murdered in Auschwitz October 26 ,1942 -Age 5.

Jeanne Lens-Born September 26,1937.Murdered in Auschwitz October 8 1942 -Age 5.

Rebecca Velleman-Born September 26,1937.Murdered in Sobibor May 14 1943 -Age 5.

Anne Groenteman-Born September 26,1936.Murdered in Auschwitz September 28 1942 -Age 6.Her eyes haunt me.

Source

https://www.joodsmonument.nl/

Just a happy girl

vega

Just a happy girl without a care in the world.

Nor should she have any cares or worries.

Her job is to be a child, go to school, do homework but most of all to be a child.

At a desk with a peaceful picture of grazing Frisian cows behind her, Maybe they ere the cows she got her milk from she might ponder.

A smile that would melt anyone’s heart. a smile that would bring anyone joy and not hate.

Yet it was hate that killed her.

Nelly Vega born in Amsterdam on 2 April 1934, killed in Sobibor 9 July 1943.

Just a happy girl without a care in the world, it was too much to deal with for the evil men that killed her. Happy was not on their agenda, Joy was not on their agenda, Love was not on their agenda, at least not for those they deemed subhuman  and to be less then them. But in reality it was those evil men who were subhuman.

But this happy girl without a care in the world. Makes me realize that evil will not prevail.

 

Holocaust – Victim by Victim

remy

The UN designated this day January 27 as the International Holocaust Remembrance Day. It coincides with the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, although Auschwitz (which consisted out of about 40 camps) was the biggest death camp. There were other camps, though smaller in scale but equally as evil.

I know it is hard for people to fathom the amount of people who were murdered, but you can start remembering them victim by victim.

Victims like Koenraad Huib Gezang aka Remy van Duinwijck, two days from now it would have been his 78th birthday, but he didn’t even reach his 2nd birthday.

In October 1942, he was taken in by the crèche opposite the Hollandsche Schouwburg in Amsterdam. He was left as  an abandoned child.Nobody knew who he was. They named him Remi van Duinwijck, after Remi after the boy in the book ‘‘Sans Famille’ or Nobody’s Boy by Hector Malot. Duinwijck was the place where he had been found.

The little angel was real heart breaker as he had stolen the hearts  of the  staff at the crèche and even of SS-Hauptsturmführer Ferdinand aus der Fünten, who came to visit him regularly. But all this attention he received made it impossible to keep him safe send him into hiding, he was taken away and sent to Westerbork in April 1943, where he remained until May 18, 1943/ From there he was sent to Sobibor where he arrived on May 21 and was killed. After the war,in 2002,.  his true identity  was discovered, his real name was Koenraad Huib Gezang.

His parents had decided in August 1942 in order to increase the chance of survival to split up the family. Koen was initially send to another family member and via other shelter places eventually ended up at the crèche, where he was left as an abandoned child.

His mother Florence Gezang-Goudeket was also murdered in Sobibor, om April 9, 1943 just a few weeks before Koen was murdered.

His father Maurits, who had been a member of the resistance in the Hague , the Netherlands and Koen’s brother Edward both survived the war.

Koen

Donation

I am passionate about my site and I know a you all like reading my blogs. I have been doing this at no cost and will continue to do so. All I ask is for a voluntary donation of $2 ,however if you are not in a position to do so I can fully understand, maybe next time then. Thanks To donate click on the credit/debit card icon of the card you will use. If you want to donate more then $2 just add a higher number in the box left from the paypal link. Many thanks

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Sources

https://jck.nl/nl/page/koenraad-huib-gezang

https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/144975068/koenraad-huib-gezang

https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/144975068/koenraad-huib-gezang

NIOD

 

 

#holocaust

 

Four Innocent Lives

4 kids

This picture really upset me, it comes from an album from the National Monument of Camp Vught. When I saw the picture first I thought it was a family picture of 4 siblings. But these kids are not related, it appears to be a staged picture taken at  Vught Concentration Camp

But that is not what upset me, what did, is the notion that these 4 kids were given some bit of hope of a life, but that life was taken from them.

4 futures taken for no other reason but hate.

What is even more upsetting is that so little is known of these children , only the bare facts and not even all the facts either.

The boy in the picture, top left, is Simon Koster born 20 January 1934 in Amsterdam.Murdered in Auschwitz 17 September 1942 .aged 8.

The little girl in front of  Simon is Dora Fresco, born 13 September 1940.in the Hague Murdered in Sobibor 16 July 1943, aged 2.

The oldest girl ,top right is Rabecca Pemina Vorst, date of birth not known, birthplace not known. Murdered in Auschwitz 26 March 1943.

The baby lying down on the bed is Rosalie van Baale, born 22 June 1941, in Amsterdam. Murdered in Vught Concentration Camp on 12 April 1943, aged 1.

NEVER EVER FORGET WHAT HATE CAN DO.

A slight correction, one of my readers found some additional information and discovered that the 4 children are related through their mothers who were sisters from each other, and the picture was made before they were sent to Vught.

The kids all have different surnames which indicates 4 mothers. This makes that picture even more upsetting because it means that 4 young families were either killed or torn apart.

 

 

 

 

Love is stronger then the fear of death.

Weddimg

I probably could do a whole essay on how Guus van der Wijk and Mina de Vries met, and at some stage I probably will, but for now it suffices to say they were extremely brave people, in fact in my eyes they are heroes.

Despite the knowledge that there was a great chance they would be separated and likely would face death , it did not stop them in declaring their love for each other and copper fasten their love in matrimony, and capture that moment for future generations.

On August 17,1942 arranged in an improvised manner to have a wedding picture taken,in Leeuwarden in the North of th Netherlands. There was no fancy wedding dress or expensive ring. Just ordinary attire, the only indication that it was a festive occasion was the carnation on Mina’s dress.

In less then 3 months later Mina would become a widow,Guus was killed in Auschwitz on November 13,1942.

Mina herself would be killed in Sobibor on March 20,1943.

In death they would be reunited again because their love had no fear of death.

Donation

I am passionate about my site and I know a you all like reading my blogs. I have been doing this at no cost and will continue to do so. All I ask is for a voluntary donation of $2 ,however if you are not in a position to do so I can fully understand, maybe next time then. Thanks To donate click on the credit/debit card icon of the card you will use. If you want to donate more then $2 just add a higher number in the box left from the paypal link. Many thanks

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Source

NIOD

 

You didn’t have to do it.

Gemmi

You didn’t have to do it. You didn’t have to kill me.

You didn’t have to do it, you wanted to.

You didn’t have to do it, but you hated me and didn’t think twice.

You hated me, why?

You hated me, because someone told you to hate me. Were you really that stupid that you couldn’t make up your own mind?

No one could make you love someone you didn’t want to love. Yet they could make you hate someone you didn’t know. A child you didn’t know.

You hated me, but I did not hate you. How could I? I didn’t know you. I got have been a dear friend because that is my name Liebfreund, Dear Friend.

Aren’t you embarrassed that a 9 year old boy knows more then you. A 9  yar old boy whp knows that it is wrong to hate. Because hate turns to anger, anger turns to bitterness, bitterness turns into self pity. It is this self pity that turned you into this pathetic excuse of a human being. Some people call you a monster, but you are not, You are a human being . You are responsible for your actions.

I am Gemmi Liebfreund. I was born on 7 October 1933, in the Hague. I was killed in Sobibor on 13 March 1943.

Lets keep it personal.

Jozua

The biggest group of people who were murdered during the Holocaust were the Jews. An estimated 6 million were killed.

The number of 6 million should have really been zero, because none of these people had done anything wrong, They were only killed because they were Jewish or had been Jewish, there was no other reason.

This may sound strange coming from somebody who writes a lot about the Holocaust but I really don’t care about that number of 6 million. It has become a statistic which often has been disputed and manipulated by people who want to use it for a political agenda. Personally I believe the number is higher.

What I am interested in ,is the personal individual stories.Because that is what each of all the 6 million people were, all unique individual.

People like the Croonenberg family. Their number was 3, a Father-Jacob Croonenberg; a Mother-Elisabeth Croonenberg-Grishaver and a Son Jozua Croonenberg.

Jacob was a Diamond worker in Amsterdam. He reached the age of 35 and was killed on June 11, 1943 in Sobibor.

Elisabeth was a housewife or homemaker in Amsterdam , he reached the age of 34 and was killed on June 11,  1943 in Sobibor.

The lovely smiley boy Jozua, was just that, a lovely beautiful smiley boy. When he was killed on June 11,1943 he had only been 7.

The document at the start of the blog is a questionnaire which was filled in by I presume Jacob.

It asked the names, birth dates and addresses of the family. What I find disturbing is the matter of fact questioning on the form and even more disturbing is the last question, which was left blank.

It asks “Specifics of family members who have already been sent to a camp or to Germany” It is clearly proof that the authorities( in this case Dutch authorities)were well aware of the camps.

In the case of the Croonenbergs there are only 5 numbers that matter. The umber 1 as in one family. The number 3 as in three family members. The numbers,35,34 and 7 as in their ages when they were killed. We should not get distracted by statistics, we should keep the memory of the victims personal.

Donation

I am passionate about my site and I know a you all like reading my blogs. I have been doing this at no cost and will continue to do so. All I ask is for a voluntary donation of $2 ,however if you are not in a position to do so I can fully understand, maybe next time then. Thanks To donate click on the credit/debit card icon of the card you will use. If you want to donate more then $2 just add a higher number in the box left from the paypal link. Many thanks

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Source

Joods Monument

 

Do you dream of me at night?

Henny

Yesterday it would have been my 80th Birthday. Henny Sophia Frank, born on February 23,1939 in Amsterdam. My name is Henny Sophia but people call me Henneke.

But alas I was not allowed to celebrate my 80th birthday. Nor was I allowed to celebrate my 70th or 60th, in fact I wasn’t even allowed to celebrate my 5th birthday.

You see, you killed me in Sobibor when I was 4. All the things I could have been never came to pass. In the end I became a number, a statistic. But I am so more then that.

I am a child who had many dreams, dreams of becoming a teacher, a nurse, a doctor or just simply someone that works in a shop, a boutique where they sell the lastest fashion from Paris and Milan.

My dream were cut short by you and the regime you so admired, a regime of hate and greed.

My dreams were cut short, but do you see me in your dreams?

Do you ever think of me or all the others you killed, the ones you lied to. You told them not to worry, they’d be fine after they had a shower, but they did not get water but death.

Do you ever see my eyes in your dreams? My eyes that only displayed innocence.

I doubt you dream at all.

 

There is nothing more beautiful then the smile of a child.

ema

Being a Parent is the hardest job in the world. The sleepless nights, the dirty diapers, the countless times being peed on.Also the worries when your baby has a bit of a temperature, the millions of scenarios of what could go wrong with your child.

But all of that is forgotten the second you see that very first smile. Nothing on this earth is more valuable or could replace its beauty.

A smile so pure and full of innocence and unconditional love, it could melt every one’s heart.

Yet there are those who saw this token of purity and innocence as a threat to their very existence.

The love was answered with hate.

The pureness was answered with filth.

The innocence was answered with death.

How could anyone look at a smiley face like that of Emma Zilverberg and feel compelled and righteous enough to destroy that life?

It breaks my heart to think that the last minutes of this 18 month old girl were filled with pure evil. Evil in its most barbaric, inhumane form.

The really disturbing aspect of this that those who killed her possibly had young children themselves, or may have been an uncle or aunt to a niece or nephew.

Emma Zilverberg was killed in Sobibor she was still a baby. If we forget Emma and all those countless children who died in the Holocaust and other genocides, we will have failed as a society.

 

Source of picture

Ancientfaces.com