FRENCH CHILDREN OF THE HOLOCAUST

A memorial
Serge Klarsfeld  

 
Previous Page Back  Contents  Contents Page X Home Page Home Page  Forward Next Page 
     
were, and I had my answer, its full force coming at an unexpected moment that recalled what Magda Bogin, who translated some of these pages, has referred to as our "inter-changeability" with the victims. It was on a summer day in Bar Harbor, Maine, where I was strolling with my three-year-old daughter. We were two tourists among many, gazing into shop windows. Thinking that she had her eye on me, I stepped into a shop for a moment which must have turned into two or three. Suddenly, I heard a shriek from the sidewalk. I dashed out to see my daughter's face filled with the fear of having been deserted in a strange town. At that instant, I had a flash of an image of her, separated from parents and uncomforted, first in the filth of Drancy, then in a boxcar on the way to Auschwitz: the actual fate of 11,000 children arrested in France. Then I understood, not with my intellect but with a father's protective instinct, why the Klarsfelds had always emphasized the children.

As parents, we observe simultaneously our own aging and our children's blossoming. Our expectations for ourselves are gradually transferred to them. If we could put our bodies in the way of their pain, even trading our lives for theirs, we would do so – as Arno Klarsfeld had done. The parents of the children in this book could not do that. They were powerless even to preserve the memory of their children. This memorial book full of innocent faces accomplishes that sacred task.
Peter Hellman
New York, October 1996
    
   

FRENCH CHILDREN OF THE HOLOCAUST

A memorial
Serge Klarsfeld

 
Previous Page  Back Page X Forward  Next Page