Dagmar Lieblová

She and her family were transported to Terezin 2nd June 1942, transferred to Auschwitz-Birkenau in December 1943, from July 1944 she did forced labor in Hamburg in a branch of Neuengamme concentration camp. In March she was taken to 1945 Bergen-Belsen.

She is the only survivor in her family.

Like all the other Jewish families from Kutna Hora we had to report to be registered in the neighboring town of Kolin in spring 1942. We had to walk the distance of 15 km back home. All we could talk about was what to take with us, in order to utilize the 50 kg we were allocated most effectively. We were taken to Terezin. We left behind a beautiful house, big enough for several families, where my father had practiced as a physician. Dagmar-lieblova2 During the first few months my mother, my younger sister, my grandmother and I stayed in the Hamburger-Barracks. We were separated from my father. There were no beds, and we had to sleep on the floor. In the fall of that year my grandmother and many other old people were deported to the east. We never heard what happened to her. I sent to stay in the girls’ home. During the day I worked in the agricultural department. One day, on my way back, I picked a field flower, but that was strictly prohibited. I hid it in my stocking and took it to my mother for her birthday.

We arrived in Auschwitz at night. The SS were shouting and hitting us, their aggressive dogs were barking when they drove us from the cars like cattle. Activities of that kind always happened at night. Shortly afterwards my mother received a message that her brother had died, who had arrived in the same concentration camp the months earlier. We received tattoos and were sent to the “sauna”. A woman made a remark to us, “I hope you’ll come back.” I did not understand it at that time when they talked about the gas. For some time we did not have any news about my father. We looked for him and found him. He had changed so much; he was so sad and unhappy, that we hardly recognized him. Later he felt better. In the shacks he had to examine people and see whether they had lice; that way he got the opportunity to talk to us. Some of our relatives were sent to the gas chambers in March 1944, together with all the other people from the September transport. Early in July 1944 there was a selection for able-bodied people of certain age groups. Nobody in my family matched the requirements for this group. Because of a faulty registration I was allocated to the labor transport. In a transport to leaving. I never saw them again.

In Hamburg we had to clear the rubble of destroyed houses and factories. There were air raids almost every night. The last camp where I stayed was bombed. When I came home from work, all I found were wounded and dead women.

In Bergen-Belsen it was impossible to stay alive for a long time. There was no water, almost no food, and behind the buildings dead bodies were piled up.

The war was over; I had typhoid fever and was admitted to the hospital. A friend of my family met me in Prague and took me to a doctor in my hometown. He diagnosed tuberculosis and sent me to a sanatorium. I was 16 years old and alone. It took three years to recover, and to get used to living a normal life again.

Ph.D., translator, born May 19, 1929 in Kutna Hora, married, 3 children.

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