Protocol Nr. 594
Fanny Günzenberger presents the following: My personal tragedy started in 1941, when they collected Jews of Polish origin in Hungary. That time, they took me and my parents, 5 brothers and sisters of mine and a great number of relatives. No one remained alive except for me. I managed to escape from Kamenetz-Podolsk before they shot all those enormous number of Jews. The way back was really horrible, I dared to walk only during the night in the bottom of ditches. During the day I hid in a stack of hay or in a stall. I ate what I found on the fields and in the woods, edible plants, carrots, and potatoes. For me, the suffering in Germany was not a surprise or a novelty. Finally, I managed to get back into Hungary, however I did not return to our village but worked for Jewish families in Ungvár. In 1943, when Germans entered the country, they constructed the ghetto in Ungvár soon, and all Jews had to enter it. We still lived well in the ghetto disregarding that they beat and interrogated richer Jews to find out where they hid their valuables. Around 6 weeks later, we were entrained and we arrived in Auschwitz after a three-day-long miserable journey. Here they immediately separated strong people suitable for hard work from the elderly, the young and the weak. They took us into the baths, seized our belongings, cut our hair, washed us, and let us stay nude in the cold room for hours before they gave us some ragged clothes. They led us into a barrack where there was empty place only on the ground. We spent all the time in Auschwitz queuing up for roll calls. From the morning till noon there was a roll call, then there was the roll call before lunch, and another two hours waiting in the afternoon. In between, the hut was cleaned and we were forced to stay in the open. There were frequent selections causing always terrible anxiety as we already knew what they meant, why flames were coming out of the chimneys of the crematorium day and night. Only 10 days passed before they selected me into a transport for work. They made me have another bath and put me on a train heading to Bergen-Belsen. We were glad that the two of us who knew each other still from Hungary could stay together, and that we got out of Auschwitz that meant constant anxiety. We did not have a better situation either in Bergen-Belsen. Food was extremely scarce, treatment was cruel. People were beaten up all the time. We had to do some awfully difficult work carrying heavy loads. Every day a lot of us died here. Luckily, we did not stay here long either but set off soon for Salzwedel. The lager in Salzwedel was small, altogether 1,300 women were kept here. They treated us less cruelly as in Bergen. Daily food comprised of half litre of black coffee in the morning and the evening, some watery vegetable soup at noon and 200 grams of bread. Sometimes we got 20 grams of margarine, or marmalade. We were awfully starving. We had a lot of work to do even if it was not so difficult. Mostly we shovelled sand and pebbles for 12 hours a day. Many died of exhaustion. Everyone was as thin as a skeleton. When Americans got closer they wanted to take us away but had no time to do so as Americans already arrived into the camp.