Fania Wedro was born Fania Hellman in Koretz, Poland on August 25, 1927. When she was fourteen years old, the Nazis took away her father and the other men living in the village. Fania then spent six months in a work ghetto in Koretz, where she escaped two mass killings by the Nazis. After escaping the second mass killing, she lived in hiding in the forest for eighteen months.
After being liberated by the Russians in 1944, Wedro was smuggled across various borders and eventually reached a displaced persons camp in Linz, Austria. She became a teacher in the camp and met and married her husband Leo (Leib) Wedro. In 1948, the couple immigrated to Canada and became successful business owners.
In this program, co-presented with the Calgary Jewish Federation, explore Fania’s experiences during the Holocaust, and her efforts to bring attention to the massacre of Jewish villagers in eastern Europe. She is interviewed by the Museum’s Senior Public Programs Producer Ari Goldstein.
Watch the program below.
Recording transcript for Stories Survive: Fania Wedro
This program’s original recording transcript is below. This transcription was created automatically during a live program so may contain inaccurate transcriptions of some words.
Ari Goldstein: i'm Ari Goldstein Senior Public programs producer at the museum Jewish heritage.
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Ari Goldstein: a living memorial to the Holocaust and it's a true pleasure to welcome you to today's program with the remarkable Fania Wedro.
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Ari Goldstein: Holocaust survivor in Calgary Canada who's 94 years young, we have a special thanks to marnie ponder and Dalia live in the Calgary Jewish federation were with fanya today and we're partnering with us to present this program.
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Ari Goldstein: Fania's story which you'll hear today is particularly unique because she and her family experienced an untold chapter of the Holocaust, known as the Holocaust by bullets.
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Ari Goldstein: The phrase refers to the mass shootings across Eastern Europe conducted by Nazi forces and their collaborators between 1941 and 1944. of the Jewish victims of the Holocaust approximately 40% were murdered.
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Ari Goldstein: In these kinds of mass shootings, yet their stories of largely faded into obscurity as contemporary observers have focused on the Nazi camps.
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Ari Goldstein: Fania has worked tirelessly to bring attention to the Holocaust by bullets and teach future generations about what happened to her community.
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Ari Goldstein: She follows in the footsteps of people like Father Patrick Desbois a friend priest and Holocaust researcher who has devoted his life to uncovering mass graves and the stories of victims in towns like the one funny is from.
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Ari Goldstein: Fania was the recipient of the 2019 golden my air leadership award from Israel bonds and, more recently, she was selected by the usc Shoah foundation, as the latest participant in their dimensions and testimony program which will turn funniest testimony into a hologram.
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Ari Goldstein: As funny as speaks today, please feel free to share questions for her and the zoom Q amp a box and will save time at the end to get to them Fania without further ado welcome.
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Ari Goldstein: Fania I wanted to begin by asking you about the town you grew up in koretz, can you tell us what you remember, of course, before the war.
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Fania Wedro: Well, I.
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Fania Wedro: Am very.
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Fania Wedro: vividly it was a very beautiful town.
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Fania Wedro: A Jewish town and Zionistic town and a cultural town, full of culture.
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Fania Wedro: and
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Fania Wedro: We need to have that man is don't forget we had even though we're.
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Fania Wedro: Not that religious, but the secular.
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Fania Wedro: predate have their the big gracious shield the big shoe of the out there.
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Fania Wedro: They got basket she'll go on stage show, and then we have classes, we are tools for the for the shoemaker choose for the taylor's so it was it was it was something it's a beautiful and we had.
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Fania Wedro: They had many schools, we had the Hebrew school private that same boat and we had a Polish school and the Ukrainian school.
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Fania Wedro: So when.
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Fania Wedro: I happen to be one of the lucky ones I very good parents I don't know if the group llc or not, because as children we weren't supposed to know.
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Fania Wedro: Our children, we were supposed to be seen, but not heard and our job was to go to school, and I was lucky to be in a terrible in a private Ebro school, which all the things all them.
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Fania Wedro: You know, we in Hebrew.
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Fania Wedro: and Polish so even mess we get in Hebrew and math and Polish and they're the geography and it's your mood and then about Israel that's in our town was the extra that sadness that means to get used to it, those days, the venturi Israel as certificate.
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Fania Wedro: To Israel so many certificates were allowed to get into Israel, so they it was Hollywood scene and they were now town they getting ready to to work the land dude so it was it was it's very hard to explain, because it, it was all their heart and the show.
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Fania Wedro: The hood your soul was in four sizes for Israel and the slide was going in school.
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Fania Wedro: Even in grade two was after actually only April, it was a good that may you woulda wherever.
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Fania Wedro: So could qualify for it, that was like a qualified and then Saturday was a job, we can discuss like a little office, whatever they rented a room somewhere and we don't a dog, with all the Israeli songs and dancing the auras.
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Fania Wedro: I knew when I came to Israel, I could visualize I knew where I was.
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Fania Wedro: Because the path is that the map of Israel, we would I would visualize it, though that's how much it was instilled in US Zionism.
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Ari Goldstein: wow and now koretz was in Poland, when you were growing up and it's now in Ukraine with the town of sort of even mix of Poles and Ukrainians.
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Ari Goldstein: yeah.
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Fania Wedro: We are pose with your cranium a Jewish people prefer over 5000 tweets people which lives in the Center of the town and some Polish people with us.
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Fania Wedro: Around town, but the polls and D mostly Ukrainian it costs a quarter involving as the new city and the Ukrainian to own the land, but East Ukraine that time was.
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Fania Wedro: Whoever at five factors land was a very rich family because it's very productive it's a black the black earth chambliss on Black so it was very, very.
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Fania Wedro: A mixed mixed them, but the to swim together because we, but most of them to sleep in town so yeah.
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Ari Goldstein: Now I know later in the war, you your neighbors really turned on you, but, but in the years before the war started, did you have warm relations people of different backgrounds, in your community.
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Fania Wedro: Yes, we did we did very much with the neighbors that was anti semitism, not after 35.
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Fania Wedro: You know, when we had a very, very good leader in Poland.
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Fania Wedro: mill Pilsudski Marshall episode ski after he died in 35 don't very bad for the Jewish people, but that, for the government and all that, but with the neighbors will leave the harmony well.
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Fania Wedro: They didn't go out of the out of the town, because it to stern summers you know and that's all We heard this shape jj you know sheet, perhaps the dirty job, and you know but.
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Fania Wedro: But being in town before family history and.
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Ari Goldstein: See now the war began when you are in seventh grade and Russian forces occupied corot's and your family tried it first to fleet eastward into Russia, can you tell us about what happened.
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Fania Wedro: Well, in 1939 September 1 when the war broke out.
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Fania Wedro: We will prevent the speak to sleep with parlance, because Poland, they used to make fun.
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Fania Wedro: You would understand spell rates per vehicle back Rebecca because reads was rich neatly was that time that the President, whatever and backwards in the government and the politicians, the rates and back backwards and.
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Fania Wedro: So we made fun how we control, remember that my mom is to say, how can a country exist two weeks, and the end be conquered.
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Fania Wedro: So we went to sleep with the with the Polish people with a Polish Army woke up at the Russian my mother said, with the Bolshevik so where we were taking a bit of Russia 1939 and life was very good, well, they did sense of people and severe the quality, the rich people so because.
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Fania Wedro: They wanted a socialistic country walnuts, but we were children, what did I we know we went to school and be to be standing was the father stallion.
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Fania Wedro: In the River pioneers rashes songs and mortar sheila was the hero so.
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Fania Wedro: It was quite a good life under the Russians media did very good deal 41 when the war started.
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Ari Goldstein: And, did you stay in Jewish school under the Russians are they converted the.
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Ari Goldstein: School to a different you.
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Fania Wedro: know.
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Fania Wedro: They didn't did it, I went out from the Jewish school my mother took me out because to figure out yourself as Russia, so we sent it to the Russian school, but the Hebrew school turns into a Jewish school.
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Fania Wedro: So it was a Jewish language everything.
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Fania Wedro: But they opened up the the the school they opened up one of the policy schools tune into Russian school.
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Fania Wedro: But they still have a Ukrainian they didn't have a policy that a Ukrainian a Jewish and Russian school, I went to the rest in school.
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Ari Goldstein: Now, under the you're the two years that you spend on a Russian occupation your family had an opportunity to flee eastward into Russia and you decided to take that risk, what can you tell us about the decision.
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Fania Wedro: We were two years some that the Russian.
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Fania Wedro: 39 September in 1941 in June 22 when the war broke out.
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Fania Wedro: With the Germany.
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Fania Wedro: There so as the German start to to get me in the war broke out the Russians Lucas was still the border between not in our town was in the border and told us the first evacuated their own people, and then they say come with us.
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Fania Wedro: So we did we did that up because they were still bombing in McDonald was one.
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Fania Wedro: You know I remember one Sue Kenny Kenny died was for from a bomb.
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Fania Wedro: So they took us to the when a horse and wagon those days, you know we didn't have any and prevent this fallacy tamia.
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Fania Wedro: And then the propaganda was there.
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Fania Wedro: That they're killing that people are dying Russia founder.
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Fania Wedro: And so on remember my father said this i'll never forget that this long and the depth of the sword is easier, the depth of hunger.
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Fania Wedro: And you figure out.
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Fania Wedro: You know this society, the German Society that such.
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Fania Wedro: It would do nothing to us that so so educated so advanced so because he remembers yet from from Joseph stein's with Francis was an enhanced year but you always talked about France Joseph so.
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Fania Wedro: So he says, you know what Why would we want to let people die of hunger let's go back they're nice people they won't do nothing to us to be nice.
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Fania Wedro: that's why we return.
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Fania Wedro: Many people.
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Ari Goldstein: How much how many of the Jews in your town chose to go eastward with you, it clean, the German occupation.
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Ari Goldstein: You do remember, I mean really.
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Fania Wedro: I don't know how many, but quite a few with the vegans.
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Fania Wedro: To me it seems like it, many people I couldn't give you a number, because from our town, many of them were taken into the army.
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Fania Wedro: You know when they're there, the word started with more of allies, the men but mobilize and quite a few people that's thing that we've got the shared Rita Rita the remnants.
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Fania Wedro: Of the Jewish people that later survived the game they came to to Israel.
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Fania Wedro: Thank God for them.
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Fania Wedro: yeah.
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Fania Wedro: So.
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Ari Goldstein: So you started to flee, but you but hearing propaganda about hunger in the Soviet Union, you turned.
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Fania Wedro: Around turn around to begin back.
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Ari Goldstein: Now, when you return to koretz it was a very different place than when you.
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Fania Wedro: came to help.
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Fania Wedro: To help they didn't track, and these are neighbors neighbors to and all of us, because they see they promised them.
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Fania Wedro: This he said, Miss Tina Ukrainian independent Ukrainian.
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Fania Wedro: So.
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Fania Wedro: Independent here in providing the kill the Jews.
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Fania Wedro: unify and the Ukrainian was never in eastern Ukraine was never independent.
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Fania Wedro: And neither get independence.
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Fania Wedro: So we weren't they away.
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Ari Goldstein: at that age, it must have been confusing for you to come back to a place that you had lived in your whole life and suddenly have such different relationships with your neighbors.
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Fania Wedro: My dear those days.
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Fania Wedro: We didn't have psychologists and psychiatrists.
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Fania Wedro: Those days we did what we had to do.
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Fania Wedro: And that's it I should we found the difference, I found the difference between down neighbors but.
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Fania Wedro: That put it is if it's bad or good, we have to do it and that's it and.
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Fania Wedro: And that's what it is.
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Fania Wedro: This good it is.
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Ari Goldstein: So, once you return to core it's how else did life change under German occupation.
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Fania Wedro: that's a question.
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Fania Wedro: We don't became people became they treat us like sub human.
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Fania Wedro: took us first of all, it, it was.
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Fania Wedro: God the universe it's a Community Council.
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Fania Wedro: And then the Ukrainian.
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Fania Wedro: And they're all military police and also the Jewish police, which was under the law.
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Fania Wedro: And if you're going from house to house and asking one day one day to you the Germans used to come in and say.
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Fania Wedro: That they did so much gold.
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Fania Wedro: or so much silver, so the rat there, the Ukrainian police used to come with burlap sacks and said look so get for for silver all the silver cutlery.
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Fania Wedro: Anything regarding silver we gave it to them, those days we didn't realize they're buying it, they have life, now they wanted, we gave it to them and they took us in everyday, we have to go to work.
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Fania Wedro: it's not such a thing you went to work worked in there and start semester ends on the roads, we are there, we had the refinery sugar finally should going to end in our town, which was very well known.
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Fania Wedro: it's applied sugar over Poland, so we had to go work there.
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Fania Wedro: And we had to go and work in there.
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Fania Wedro: In the synagogue's for the synagogue's into staples to put the horses, and for that we got 100 grams of grab that day.
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Fania Wedro: So that that would do.
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Ari Goldstein: How does.
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Ari Goldstein: How does it work today when you were when you left home to go to work, did you know where you were heading each day or would they randomly assign you.
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Fania Wedro: know the first day they had to do we came to the youth of every day, we have to come to the US, and they are scientists.
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Fania Wedro: And for bread, we used to get up, I was a child, so I used to get up two o'clock in the morning and stay in line for bread.
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Fania Wedro: So.
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Fania Wedro: And there is to beat the daylights out of that with with whips or a truck would come in with a line up with in and kill a few people just drive in it was it was horrible but.
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Fania Wedro: Many times, he came over thought bread, but my mother used to I used to come home and.
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Fania Wedro: cool so, and so the next day, my mother put my brother's jacket and me a big one put books in the front books in the back tied with the rope and that's the way I.
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Fania Wedro: And one time I stayed and came by the door is sexual snot brag so that a bit he never got bread bread and it took us to work and I didn't come on God no still win, and that was.
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Fania Wedro: My my my father by that time we lost her father, we didn't know where it was so she was.
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Fania Wedro: She was so happy to see me that.
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Fania Wedro: that she didn't mind if he broke bread or not.
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Ari Goldstein: So you were the designated member of your family to stand in the bread rational.
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Fania Wedro: Yes, yeah yeah I was the button I wouldn't let my mother go, oh no, no, not would let her go.
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Ari Goldstein: Were there other children waiting in line with you.
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Fania Wedro: yeah most of them yeah.
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Fania Wedro: yeah children, we were children, we were already grown up what do you want when you're the age of 40 or not a child.
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Fania Wedro: You up overnight.
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Ari Goldstein: And you, you are not in school anymore, because it will work.
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Fania Wedro: or no, no, no, no school is definitely for the Jewish people school.
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Ari Goldstein: You mentioned that your father was taken away this was September 1941 right.
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Fania Wedro: That was that it was in September, it was a purchase.
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Fania Wedro: You know it's a holiday agreeing and purchase that don't know if it's a September August, whatever we knew, but those days, it was purchased.
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Fania Wedro: And then, so I was walking with my father and the people walking the shoemaker then pawlowski bembridge come over to him, and since you asked to come to work, you know my father neighbors yes in Jewish because the Ukrainians come to work and the guy that we do so well.
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Fania Wedro: And then, and he says go more mental model being the angle, because was very normal they grab people to go to work and then the return and never return.
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Fania Wedro: That will stand that was the last.
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Fania Wedro: Is my father feel I found the grave of war.
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Ari Goldstein: How did you find out what happened to them later on.
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Fania Wedro: or death was in 92.
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Fania Wedro: In 1900 Ukraine became independent, and that was there a 92 yeah.
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Ari Goldstein: So for 50 years you didn't know what become a father.
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Fania Wedro: Nobody knew where the doctor.
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Fania Wedro: Later baby boomers but the late, we found the grave so for the people to 350 people.
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Ari Goldstein: find you I know this is a very dark part of her story, but it it's around this time that the killing actions began in your town and you lost your mother as well, can you tell us about that.
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Fania Wedro: It was a.
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Fania Wedro: week we mother woke me up one morning.
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Fania Wedro: It was Arab support.
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Fania Wedro: And she says so many people on the streets length we'll go out we'll go out we'll see what's going on and we went out no sooner we went out when a policeman grab this Emily.
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Fania Wedro: And we were going getting in line it wasn't line it was.
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Fania Wedro: Green signal matter, it was a mess of people, you know just walk but.
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Fania Wedro: At the sides, along with us where.
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Fania Wedro: The police, the police and the agenda on Monday, you there Russians.
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Fania Wedro: and not the rest pardon me did the Germans were going with.
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Fania Wedro: With rifles and with the guns and the match, just like this, and nobody there was validated step out of the line but shoot you right away the chart chapter and that's how much does down to the.
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Fania Wedro: monastery ski street to.
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Fania Wedro: To film US House a big house and down there, they have to take of the codes.
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Fania Wedro: And the clothes, you know, like scarves any loose clothing and jewelry them i'm telling you they were delicious of jewelry months of loads unbelievable and then We walked out and the.
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Fania Wedro: can be stood down there, and after a while they told us to go to the market environment we're going down the market, we were staying down there and it was packed with people.
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Fania Wedro: So the.
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Fania Wedro: Agenda bent over and it said it pointed the finger you you you feel now I can step that some difference with the finger is not family you you you, you and pointed to me and asked world I am so I started to say for my mother pushed me she's 16.
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Fania Wedro: and pushed me in night them back, but he grabbed me by my arm yank me every heart, and that was the last so my mother.
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Ari Goldstein: And she saved your life by telling the office of the US 16.
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Fania Wedro: yeah.
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Fania Wedro: She was she saved my life.
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Fania Wedro: Now.
00:25:05.100 --> 00:25:12.030
Ari Goldstein: When she pushed you forward and said you were 16 and you were yanked off to the side, where What happened then.
00:25:13.020 --> 00:25:14.520
Fania Wedro: Then they they.
00:25:15.810 --> 00:25:20.790
Fania Wedro: Take a street, and this is the House of cleaner cleaner cells.
00:25:21.840 --> 00:25:33.300
Fania Wedro: In our place when she was they have some award we already go to the River debate, it was nice and warm already so we all set on the ground.
00:25:35.370 --> 00:25:36.600
Fania Wedro: And we will we think.
00:25:38.070 --> 00:25:47.520
Fania Wedro: we're just waiting there and the meantime they had men on one side and as women, on the other side and we're waiting.
00:25:48.660 --> 00:26:04.650
Fania Wedro: And we heard in the meantime in front of weirdness going by wagner's with people elderly people on it and we heard some shooting like boom boom boom boom boom from far away and.
00:26:06.060 --> 00:26:17.490
Fania Wedro: In Bible we're sitting we saw seeing that this is something that will be all this, all this in my mind like I don't have to know I calendar Marshall ganz.
00:26:18.180 --> 00:26:31.500
Fania Wedro: A few days purely a week or two before shabbat I can feel it, I can see it in my mind everything that would have been such a scene, that I don't know want to go through.
00:26:33.270 --> 00:26:38.610
Fania Wedro: Because we had a woman lake in our town and she was a little bit.
00:26:41.460 --> 00:26:45.870
Fania Wedro: I wouldn't say crease Oh, she was a little bit mentally not stable.
00:26:51.480 --> 00:26:52.290
Fania Wedro: So.
00:26:53.370 --> 00:26:56.700
Fania Wedro: The German so never forget to enter it says.
00:26:58.110 --> 00:27:08.310
Fania Wedro: dense layer dense so she dense layer say hi littler heil Hitler she did exactly the dog and she had a two year old child.
00:27:10.140 --> 00:27:10.710
Fania Wedro: So that.
00:27:11.850 --> 00:27:27.870
Fania Wedro: The Germans and both sides Nazis go nuts, because the human person wouldn't do it mine took and the play ball, but the child, but throwing the child one to another, and she will jump jumping into from.
00:27:29.070 --> 00:27:30.090
Fania Wedro: Two kids the child.
00:27:34.590 --> 00:27:44.280
Fania Wedro: And she couldn't be by the end they took the child by man, and it was a fence and they threw the child against the fence.
00:27:47.220 --> 00:27:53.310
Fania Wedro: They had his Defense everything spattered block hey.
00:28:00.060 --> 00:28:00.540
Fania Wedro: speech.
00:28:01.830 --> 00:28:02.490
Fania Wedro: speech but.
00:28:06.210 --> 00:28:07.680
Fania Wedro: This is something that.
00:28:09.840 --> 00:28:14.610
Fania Wedro: it's very hard to to explain or understand or to visualize it.
00:28:16.710 --> 00:28:25.470
Fania Wedro: It was horrible just horrible that's the way we said, like this till about four o'clock and then sets go home.
00:28:26.850 --> 00:28:30.480
Fania Wedro: that's it, they are the job to be done, it was a nine to five job.
00:28:31.680 --> 00:28:32.340
Fania Wedro: And the theater.
00:28:34.860 --> 00:28:39.690
Fania Wedro: And we went home what home and to set the next day report to the other.
00:28:41.280 --> 00:28:45.870
Fania Wedro: So that what we did, I went home what home I didn't have a home.
00:28:47.160 --> 00:28:49.590
Fania Wedro: don't want to go to put them away.
00:28:50.610 --> 00:28:53.160
Fania Wedro: And the one day, everything was wiped out.
00:28:54.300 --> 00:28:55.170
Fania Wedro: whole family.
00:28:56.610 --> 00:28:58.590
Fania Wedro: No one will know was left.
00:28:59.820 --> 00:29:01.770
Fania Wedro: All in one day ever support.
00:29:04.590 --> 00:29:05.250
00:29:07.410 --> 00:29:11.460
Ari Goldstein: When did you understand what it happened to your mom was it right away.
00:29:13.710 --> 00:29:15.210
Fania Wedro: Well, we knew right away.
00:29:16.590 --> 00:29:18.090
Fania Wedro: That they were they killed him.
00:29:20.700 --> 00:29:21.720
Fania Wedro: The next day.
00:29:23.520 --> 00:29:24.480
Fania Wedro: We came to the.
00:29:26.970 --> 00:29:31.530
Fania Wedro: First of all, I didn't them know on an event, my next door neighbor she chased me out.
00:29:32.670 --> 00:29:35.280
Fania Wedro: i'm a dirty to she was like my second mother.
00:29:36.600 --> 00:29:39.660
Fania Wedro: Get out of here dirty to back to that.
00:29:41.100 --> 00:29:42.930
Fania Wedro: So we went to the bank.
00:29:45.510 --> 00:29:47.610
Fania Wedro: The sentence to.
00:29:51.450 --> 00:29:56.430
Fania Wedro: match the salt so many people and we came to a place name kozak.
00:29:57.540 --> 00:29:58.500
Fania Wedro: We came there.
00:30:00.180 --> 00:30:02.040
Fania Wedro: Three massive grapes.
00:30:04.020 --> 00:30:09.810
Fania Wedro: With people on it and told us to never so cruel to gather up the graves cover.
00:30:14.730 --> 00:30:19.380
Fania Wedro: It was not nothing so we cut through the dirt.
00:30:25.950 --> 00:30:26.160
Fania Wedro: and
00:30:32.790 --> 00:30:37.680
Fania Wedro: Then I found my mother scrub them inside the great.
00:30:39.450 --> 00:30:40.110
Fania Wedro: And then.
00:30:43.680 --> 00:30:44.580
Fania Wedro: It came to the US.
00:30:48.990 --> 00:30:50.880
Fania Wedro: And decode this record to again.
00:30:52.020 --> 00:30:53.820
Fania Wedro: It was the gap that wasn't.
00:31:00.300 --> 00:31:02.520
Fania Wedro: They get to worsen.
00:31:06.540 --> 00:31:27.570
Fania Wedro: With no words from the get go they twisted score on the street and part of the side street and they close they didn't close off, but I mean that was the gap, because in our town if somebody walked out everybody knew about even the ingredients, you know, it was a small down.
00:31:29.880 --> 00:31:32.340
Fania Wedro: And then, then we had to go the next day to.
00:31:34.980 --> 00:31:39.030
Fania Wedro: The next day, we went down there you look on the ground.
00:31:41.970 --> 00:31:42.660
Fania Wedro: It was.
00:31:44.070 --> 00:31:58.530
Fania Wedro: Little I don't know how to explain it it's when you look on a map a look reverse on a map very narrow that's like thread run through and that's was with blog.
00:32:05.010 --> 00:32:07.440
Fania Wedro: But the third day where we came.
00:32:08.550 --> 00:32:09.690
Fania Wedro: The ground both.
00:32:12.810 --> 00:32:20.460
Fania Wedro: And we kept coming many days I don't even bother days seven kilometres, we had would poke there and back.
00:32:21.690 --> 00:32:25.620
Fania Wedro: How many days I couldn't tell you I don't remember I just woke.
00:32:26.820 --> 00:32:29.340
Fania Wedro: up in a daze read the comic rates.
00:32:32.010 --> 00:32:38.430
Ari Goldstein: On your ad years later, I can see how hard it is to tell the story, we really are grateful that you're doing it for us.
00:32:39.420 --> 00:32:46.260
Fania Wedro: I cannot remember how many days, but then, when they get it was very, very hard and to get.
00:32:50.640 --> 00:32:50.880
Ari Goldstein: Why.
00:32:51.360 --> 00:32:56.340
Ari Goldstein: Earning, why are you returning each day to the killing site, whether more killings each.
00:32:56.400 --> 00:33:00.900
Fania Wedro: Each day, that you had no with us, such as rabia to cover Mr pig.
00:33:00.900 --> 00:33:13.530
Fania Wedro: couldn't do it to day duties took many days to cover up the grave and I just couldn't could realize other people will lead software.
00:33:16.590 --> 00:33:23.190
Fania Wedro: It took me seven years delay read the book Holocaust bipolar read by far the one.
00:33:24.810 --> 00:33:31.860
Fania Wedro: That caught my eyes, I couldn't figure out how did they go down and put a bullet into each person.
00:33:33.750 --> 00:33:42.690
Fania Wedro: And he explained in the book father, the one that they got girls from the field which trampled on them.
00:33:44.430 --> 00:33:51.300
Fania Wedro: And then put some tweaks so a new, because when they showed them this out of the bag and they fell into the.
00:33:52.350 --> 00:33:53.010
Fania Wedro: grave.
00:33:55.470 --> 00:33:59.400
Fania Wedro: So so that's why it took a long, long time.
00:34:00.450 --> 00:34:11.820
Fania Wedro: Many days I Ben and I don't think I even cried I just don't know, everybody was the same situation everybody when are you going to complain to.
00:34:12.750 --> 00:34:22.170
Fania Wedro: But I will so they see is nobody wanted to be beside I was the only one, this one at a casting decision about this or that someone I need them, no one.
00:34:23.280 --> 00:34:34.710
Fania Wedro: So all the time that I was went through the water, it was nothing but that they see is to everyone, nobody wanted me around because I was a bird everyone but.
00:34:35.850 --> 00:34:46.440
Fania Wedro: Somehow when there's a will there's one lady when I came to the gear from the gap of passion there's some never forget may she rest in peace.
00:34:48.780 --> 00:34:58.020
Fania Wedro: came over to her, she is delivered to the House, so I came over to route from to get myself out the gift.
00:35:00.060 --> 00:35:03.060
Fania Wedro: I gave what return it's a passion can so on.
00:35:04.200 --> 00:35:15.870
Fania Wedro: So she said she meant in the back and took out the package, and she says with everybody rob the houses, because when I came up every Morales was empty.
00:35:17.340 --> 00:35:32.010
Fania Wedro: So she said I knew in school, you will need to get a sweater so I picked up a few things, just in case somebody to survive, so you left something so she gave me this package which wasn't sweater and a few things the web.
00:35:33.780 --> 00:35:36.120
Fania Wedro: And she said to me.
00:35:38.580 --> 00:35:43.770
Fania Wedro: your mother came to me in my dreams and she's so happy down.
00:35:46.890 --> 00:35:51.900
Fania Wedro: The only thing it's wet for her it's from your tears.
00:35:52.950 --> 00:35:56.190
Fania Wedro: So I said to pacifica I promise I won't cry.
00:35:57.510 --> 00:35:58.680
Fania Wedro: she gave me bread.
00:36:00.000 --> 00:36:02.700
Fania Wedro: And now it's your assignment.
00:36:03.720 --> 00:36:08.670
Fania Wedro: And she told me please don't come no more of course life was in danger.
00:36:12.150 --> 00:36:12.570
Fania Wedro: and
00:36:14.430 --> 00:36:33.630
Fania Wedro: But her words kept me, going so I told her, I promise you punishing can survive, I never thought that they ever dreamt of surviving I says allowed to leave Hitler and i'm going to come and see you know what take right now but I never cried.
00:36:34.770 --> 00:36:36.090
Fania Wedro: I was hard as a rock.
00:36:37.110 --> 00:36:39.990
Fania Wedro: Because I wanted my body should be right for.
00:36:42.540 --> 00:36:45.900
Ari Goldstein: When was the first time you cried for this, for your mom.
00:36:48.780 --> 00:36:49.710
Fania Wedro: Never sleep or a.
00:36:51.120 --> 00:36:54.510
Fania Wedro: An ever cried the lead was liberated.
00:36:56.910 --> 00:36:58.980
Fania Wedro: and never cried out to someone.
00:37:01.710 --> 00:37:11.250
Ari Goldstein: So, after the killings funny you were forced into a ghetto, which is where you had this conversation with pasha how long were you in the ghetto before you escaped.
00:37:12.630 --> 00:37:28.680
Fania Wedro: We get to was the get requests from ever circle, to have a shovel out there, you know so then from the pentacle state to the tabernacle days Those are the two killings, indeed, and not only in our town.
00:37:29.910 --> 00:37:42.090
Fania Wedro: Look, we didn't have a communication like we have now, or even if not even 20 years ago, so they all be the same in every town.
00:37:43.500 --> 00:37:44.550
Fania Wedro: At the same time.
00:37:45.990 --> 00:37:46.620
Fania Wedro: So.
00:37:49.800 --> 00:38:00.030
Fania Wedro: So centers air so on when we had the second killing the second script because we had some quite a few people left not quite a few people.
00:38:00.450 --> 00:38:15.600
Fania Wedro: Because the minute they know what was going on, they heard this so people and we had ethics, so the pulled up the ladder up of their dicks or in the base at the very end after four o'clock do for free already so.
00:38:18.150 --> 00:38:21.300
Fania Wedro: After a while when, after the killing.
00:38:22.740 --> 00:38:28.320
Fania Wedro: The Koreans for bringing fleshing out some tuition found that you they gave them two kilos sold.
00:38:29.340 --> 00:38:42.450
Fania Wedro: came at it that's always worth a stickler sold it sold this for two kilo song and in 1942 was unified let's say nobody knew about us with all the killing was that.
00:38:44.400 --> 00:38:45.660
Fania Wedro: 1942.
00:38:46.680 --> 00:38:48.840
Fania Wedro: is to cooperate that's a finished.
00:38:50.460 --> 00:38:51.150
Fania Wedro: don't use.
00:38:53.340 --> 00:39:01.320
Ari Goldstein: So by shadow, which would have been spring Nice and 43 you escape escape to get out because there is a.
00:39:02.160 --> 00:39:03.120
Fania Wedro: body to.
00:39:03.450 --> 00:39:07.560
Fania Wedro: That that was should work was the first Peter.
00:39:08.940 --> 00:39:17.580
Fania Wedro: killing the second the same year ever support we were only six months between subway to squat we were in the ghetto.
00:39:20.280 --> 00:39:22.140
Fania Wedro: And then, was to kill less.
00:39:28.380 --> 00:39:31.620
Ari Goldstein: Since we just passed some code that was 79 years ago now.
00:39:36.570 --> 00:39:48.600
Ari Goldstein: Find yet at some point, after you had been in the ghetto for a couple months, and there was the second killing you you fled into the forest and then you were there for 1818 months, how to survive in the forest.
00:39:51.450 --> 00:39:52.230
Fania Wedro: to survive.
00:39:54.150 --> 00:39:59.430
Fania Wedro: But this is not the way you have to survive, you know so.
00:40:04.290 --> 00:40:05.670
Fania Wedro: you'd be surprised.
00:40:08.070 --> 00:40:24.540
Fania Wedro: At the time I come to the forest that was already at the beginning, I was at there is a non Jew, I went into i've stayed in the House, I stayed in House I slept in the bar and he runs.
00:40:30.510 --> 00:40:40.800
Ari Goldstein: looks like, finally, just dropped off the zoom but she should be back with us in a moment, so please sit tight and we'll make sure to finish her story she survives in the forest and is liberated.
00:40:42.900 --> 00:40:56.910
Ari Goldstein: After finding talks about liberation will open the floor for audience questions, so please feel free to start thinking about those questions now and sharing them at zoom Q amp a box and we'll get to as many as we can, and the last 10 or 15 minutes, thank you all.
00:41:06.150 --> 00:41:13.560
Ari Goldstein: I have to say we, you know we work with a lot of Holocaust survivors at the museum and after great honor and privilege of speaking with many of them tanya story.
00:41:14.040 --> 00:41:26.250
Ari Goldstein: really is unique, there are so few testimonies of these kinds of mass shootings in the Far East, so it it's just amazing that we are able to speak with her and it's clear how emotional, this is so much later.
00:41:27.660 --> 00:41:28.770
Ari Goldstein: On you're welcome back.
00:41:32.160 --> 00:41:34.770
Ari Goldstein: And we just need to unmute you before we continue.
00:41:35.730 --> 00:41:36.990
Fania Wedro: For today.
00:41:37.590 --> 00:41:43.110
Ari Goldstein: And thanks again to marnie at the Calgary Jewish Federation for making all this possible finding, can you hear me.
00:41:43.650 --> 00:41:44.010
00:41:46.530 --> 00:41:58.560
Ari Goldstein: So i'm fine you want to turn to audience questions than a few minutes but but i'm finished your story before then, so you you survive in the forest and then how did you find out that you were liberated.
00:42:00.420 --> 00:42:02.070
Fania Wedro: I did find that the big button.
00:42:03.000 --> 00:42:06.360
Ari Goldstein: What happened during liberation, did you see Russian soldiers.
00:42:07.770 --> 00:42:12.120
Fania Wedro: Oh no when I was liberated there was skim over the.
00:42:13.170 --> 00:42:20.250
Fania Wedro: Cheap see man, you see when they the Russian but they came in any place they came in.
00:42:21.510 --> 00:42:29.820
Fania Wedro: And the used to send out a I should look it up article and receivers via the sending out.
00:42:31.140 --> 00:42:39.600
Fania Wedro: To check out, we did call it to check out what's going up if it's safe for them to come me whatever you know.
00:42:41.700 --> 00:42:47.190
Fania Wedro: And it to see the cost is clear and we they came in and the.
00:42:48.330 --> 00:43:00.360
Fania Wedro: So the first thing I jumped this is i'm not Jewish and non Jewish I was dressed in rags I was full of lies that was full of scabs I was something.
00:43:02.100 --> 00:43:25.050
Fania Wedro: A really sub human and it said to me don't worry it says we are liberated from the Russian army, but I mean it was pressed severely you're not in a knot in Nigeria and the other piece of parents should I do about it or a piece of cloth from the better should wrap me around hey we are.
00:43:30.750 --> 00:43:39.420
Fania Wedro: In the said you don't have to worry if the village now, there was the crash into me that would seem to be rejoicing.
00:43:42.420 --> 00:43:43.290
Fania Wedro: So with.
00:43:44.670 --> 00:43:46.170
Fania Wedro: That said, we will sleep aerated.
00:43:51.240 --> 00:44:02.280
Ari Goldstein: Now, at your brother had survived the war, this whole time separately from you, because he had fake papers, was able to arrange that, but the rest of your family wasn't.
00:44:04.050 --> 00:44:17.130
Fania Wedro: It he was working with the Germans and German made it for him for him and his wife it's submitters mother she looks like a false teacher.
00:44:17.730 --> 00:44:19.770
Fania Wedro: She look she has blond blue eyes.
00:44:19.800 --> 00:44:26.340
Fania Wedro: was a beauty and for the two of them survived been kept under areas papers.
00:44:28.290 --> 00:44:30.990
Fania Wedro: And then Jewish papers here so.
00:44:32.850 --> 00:44:35.370
Ari Goldstein: When you were liberated, you went to go find him.
00:44:36.240 --> 00:44:40.230
Fania Wedro: No, I didn't know it was alive I didn't know.
00:44:41.610 --> 00:44:54.870
Fania Wedro: I just met him in Congress, we were liberated, we started to go back to a few people that were in before esteemed or did they leave them the neighboring towns love this slide because squads was the Center of us.
00:44:55.800 --> 00:45:06.750
Fania Wedro: So they decided to go to Conference, so we started our journey started to walk to Columbus and we walk it was already spring, it was an April.
00:45:08.640 --> 00:45:13.650
Fania Wedro: I don't know what day of April, I was liberated I couldn't even tell you.
00:45:14.730 --> 00:45:29.040
Fania Wedro: know it was in April and we started to go and it wasn't that easy because they're the River was frozen frozen frozen but that's which never freezes the data breach was bomb we couldn't go over.
00:45:29.610 --> 00:45:38.370
Fania Wedro: So we have to go all the way around to grab the leads, and then to corporates So when I came to corporate submit my brother and the street.
00:45:39.750 --> 00:45:45.930
Fania Wedro: You believe and then to live through the wall and be killed because, for one reason, because it was a Jew.
00:45:47.790 --> 00:45:51.450
Ari Goldstein: your father was killed by creating nationals after the war.
00:45:51.480 --> 00:46:01.590
Fania Wedro: The devil says yeah after the war, I mean the world is still going on in in the West, but he was killed, where it needs.
00:46:02.880 --> 00:46:08.340
Fania Wedro: The East and the he was skillful one reason, because it was a two by two, but there are.
00:46:09.570 --> 00:46:14.940
Fania Wedro: They all going on, and now is imperative, would you believe it is the hero.
00:46:16.020 --> 00:46:16.590
Fania Wedro: And then.
00:46:18.180 --> 00:46:19.680
Fania Wedro: yeah nationals.
00:46:20.460 --> 00:46:33.060
Ari Goldstein: And you in a moment we'll turn to the audience, but I want to ask you one last question this story is so challenging to tell, but you keep doing it again and again with such commitment, why do you tell the story, what do you want to.
00:46:33.330 --> 00:46:34.080
Ari Goldstein: take away from it.
00:46:36.420 --> 00:46:55.800
Fania Wedro: it's not only now for 40 years it's close to 40 years and even with Father dubois I tracked him down and I met him in in Detroit because he was the one that was in our town in the book Iran and, from what I say.
00:46:56.790 --> 00:46:59.400
Fania Wedro: I even met now I can show you have proof.
00:46:59.880 --> 00:47:10.560
Fania Wedro: that nobody knows about me, I never got good Michael nobody knew about us we're not registered no place there's no documentation.
00:47:12.120 --> 00:47:26.370
Fania Wedro: So in the tone, I hear our streets our streets our streets what's about respect to our eastern people well it's about respect the demand that laid the grapes that are no.
00:47:28.680 --> 00:47:29.010
Fania Wedro: and
00:47:31.020 --> 00:47:41.040
Fania Wedro: As much as say speak to school so So if I don't have a number, and if I wasn't wasn't in there in a concentration camp.
00:47:43.500 --> 00:47:44.580
Fania Wedro: My town.
00:47:45.600 --> 00:48:01.200
Fania Wedro: My classmate my relatives my parents, the old all will do the little towns around about the carpets visit express my goodness Ellis all of them, they don't count the people.
00:48:03.300 --> 00:48:15.480
Fania Wedro: And all Eastern Europe, nothing is mentioned about them there because we are the hidden Holocaust they killed us just before the open up the crema area crematoriums.
00:48:16.410 --> 00:48:27.600
Fania Wedro: Even with Father dubois when he spoke something didn't register to the people and that's why God gave me a long life for a reason.
00:48:29.340 --> 00:48:30.420
Fania Wedro: They can talk.
00:48:31.710 --> 00:48:35.100
Fania Wedro: i'm their voice, not very many people have a slip.
00:48:37.440 --> 00:48:38.220
Ari Goldstein: For the voice for.
00:48:39.360 --> 00:48:40.920
Fania Wedro: i'm a voice.
00:48:42.510 --> 00:48:49.500
Fania Wedro: And that's why I think the nose should know what happened in Eastern Europe, in the little town.
00:48:51.150 --> 00:48:52.470
Fania Wedro: which no one knows.
00:48:54.780 --> 00:48:55.860
Fania Wedro: No one knows.
00:48:56.790 --> 00:49:02.040
Ari Goldstein: Well, thank you for helping to put the Holocaust by bullets on the map to educate about it.
00:49:02.400 --> 00:49:15.360
Ari Goldstein: And I want to remind the audience that today's program is being recorded, so we do hope you'll share this recording in some of the other resources that we send out by email to help learn and teach about this untold chapter of the Holocaust.
00:49:17.220 --> 00:49:26.370
Ari Goldstein: Banja there's an audience question about the usc Shoah foundation project that you just wrapped up where they're turning you into a hologram well what was that, like.
00:49:28.890 --> 00:49:29.340
Fania Wedro: No.
00:49:31.290 --> 00:49:33.030
Fania Wedro: That is that.
00:49:34.110 --> 00:49:39.450
Fania Wedro: The gun they gave me a long life, I always say i'm going to live to 150.
00:49:40.500 --> 00:49:49.800
Fania Wedro: A live forever so people shouldn't forget they shouldn't forget because absolutely forget that Nice, the repeats itself.
00:49:51.000 --> 00:50:02.880
Fania Wedro: You know, history is being rewritten and the rewrite history, so this way i'm sure that someone someone someday whatever comes to museo.
00:50:04.320 --> 00:50:06.780
Fania Wedro: audience schools to be.
00:50:08.340 --> 00:50:17.880
Fania Wedro: There they bring students to the museum I don't know to tell the truth, I don't know how it exactly works, but I know one thing.
00:50:19.020 --> 00:50:20.280
Fania Wedro: They will remember.
00:50:21.330 --> 00:50:26.550
Fania Wedro: That the Holocaust did happen, and it should never, never, never happened again.
00:50:28.200 --> 00:50:35.520
Fania Wedro: it's for the future generations to know that this will never happen, you should have happened and it should never happen again.
00:50:37.110 --> 00:50:37.860
Fania Wedro: let's hope.
00:50:40.200 --> 00:50:48.900
Ari Goldstein: and through the best program that's turning your story into a hologram that message, but never again will reach people for generations.
00:50:49.560 --> 00:50:50.100
Fania Wedro: Thank you.
00:50:51.270 --> 00:50:52.050
Fania Wedro: I hope so.
00:50:53.370 --> 00:50:59.580
Ari Goldstein: Was it What was it like for you to participate in something that was so high tech and new.
00:51:02.580 --> 00:51:10.650
Fania Wedro: Well, I can tell you one thing i'm 94 i'm not that high end high tech but i'm not that low in high tech either.
00:51:11.670 --> 00:51:19.260
Fania Wedro: So so it's amazing it was just amazing what they can do it's amazing.
00:51:24.450 --> 00:51:39.750
Ari Goldstein: It is amazing, and my understanding is that a hologram won't be ready for several months, they have to process and Edit it but we'll share information about the dimensions and testimony program with our audience in in a follow up email.
00:51:40.920 --> 00:51:44.790
Fania Wedro: Good cold, it takes between eight months to a year left so.
00:51:47.820 --> 00:51:55.320
Ari Goldstein: funny I think we should wrap up here, but I, we are so grateful to you for spending, this time with us and sharing your story with us.
00:51:55.650 --> 00:52:09.060
Ari Goldstein: we're grateful to the Calgary Jewish Federation for partnering with us today, and we hope our audience remembers your lesson about the Holocaust by bullets by listening to you, we become witnesses to the story of your family and community.
00:52:12.000 --> 00:52:12.480
00:52:14.220 --> 00:52:21.990
Ari Goldstein: Everything that we do with the museum Jewish heritage to preserve stories like fine he has another Holocaust survivors is made possible through.
00:52:22.320 --> 00:52:28.530
Ari Goldstein: donor support, so we are very grateful to our audience Members who have supported them you come to the museum and.
00:52:29.370 --> 00:52:41.790
Ari Goldstein: You can learn more about the museum and join us for upcoming events at the links in the zoom chat, as I mentioned, will send an email out tomorrow to everyone who's with us today with the recording and some additional resources.
00:52:42.330 --> 00:52:49.080
Ari Goldstein: goodbye everyone stays healthy and safe finding out, we hope we get to welcome you to the Museum in person in New York someday soon.
00:52:50.190 --> 00:52:50.730
Fania Wedro: Thank you.
00:52:51.840 --> 00:52:53.130
Fania Wedro: i'm looking forward to it.
00:52:58.470 --> 00:52:58.860
Ari Goldstein: Great.
00:53:01.260 --> 00:53:02.130
Ari Goldstein: Take care everyone.
00:53:02.910 --> 00:53:04.380
Fania Wedro: Thank you bye.
Read About the Holocaust by Bullets
Between 1941 and 1944, Nazi forces and their collaborators carried out extensive mass shootings of Jews across eastern Europe, which came to be known as the “Holocaust by bullets.” Fania Wedro escaped two of these mass shootings. Learn more about the Holocaust by bullets in this article.
Explore Mass Shootings in Detail
Dr. Wendy Lower spent ten years investigating an image from the “Holocaust by bullets” which documents the horrific final moment of a family’s murder in Ukraine. Her search took her on a journey across Europe and Israel in order to reveal the victims, perpetrators, and bystanders in the image. Watch her discuss her research in this Museum lecture.
Discover My Name is Sara, a Film About Korets
The new feature film My Name is Sara tells the story of Sara Goralnik Shapiro, a survivor from Fania Wedro’s hometown of Korets. Sara, who knew Fania well, survived by pretending to be Orthodox Christian and living in the countryside surrounding the town. Learn her story in greater detail in this Museum discussion with Sara’s son and the team of filmmakers.