Mildred Greenspoon describes the last time she saw her brother.
Mildred Greenspoon, nee Felderbaum, was born in Zaleszczyki, Poland, in 1923. Her father, Ignatz, worked for a brewery while her mother, Cyla Speiser, stayed at home. She was the middle child with an older brother, Zygmunt and a younger brother, Dov. Her family moved to Lwow when Mildred was an infant.
In June of 1941 the Germans arrived in Lwow. As the city was already divided by a bridge, the Germans used that natural boundary to restrict the movement of Jews into the “Aryan section.” As the Lwow ghetto was formed space became cramped, food rare, and living conditions unbearable. By the summer of 1942 the Germans were murdering the Jews from Lwow in the tens of thousands. Mildred’s father was among the victims who were taken to Belzec.
After the summer of 1942 Mildred escaped the Lwow Ghetto with a phony birth certificate, and she risked her life crossing the bridge to the “Aryan Section,” where she took a train to Krakow. In Krakow she looked after a children of a German family. She travelled for a week to find her brother, who was in a camp in the town of Socca. She was able to spend the night with him, but was unable to help him escape. Shortly after, the camp was liquidated, and her brother was killed. Upon her return to Krakow, Mildred visited her cousin, and was informed of the death of her mother, aunt, and cousins, at the hand of the SS. Shortly after her return to Krakow she was caught by the SS, taken to Plaszow.
Mildred worked at Plaszow for a year and a half until, in August of 1944, she was transported to After 5-6 weeks in Birkenau, she was transported to Stutthof. At Stutthof the prisoners were sat in rows of 5 all day long, having to ask permission to move or use the bathroom. From late 1944 to early 1945 she dug trenches and also lived outside in these trenches, exposed to cold, hunger, and fatigue. As the Russians drew closer to the border, the Nazi’s abandoned Mildred and 200 people in a barn, when they were liberated in March of 1945. Of the 200, only half were able to walk.
After liberation Mildred and her girlfriend were able to find housing with some strangers. She returned to Krakow with the intent to travel to Israel. From there she went to Munich, where she took time for her foot to heal. In February of 1948 she left to Canada as a domestic. She met her husband when she was living in Canada and passed away in 2007.
I walked out of the camp at dawn. He walked on the one side of the street and I walked on the other. That was the last time I saw him.
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