Warning! The text retains the original spelling of surnames and place names by an Israeli researcher; in many cases it may not be correct. Fragments that could contain current personal data have been removed from the interview.

 

Name of Interviewee: Ahuva Atar (nee Luba Rajchman), b. June 26th 1943;

Interview topic: Rajchman family;

Father's name: Joseph [Józef] Reichman [Rajchman];

Mother's name: Sarah Lapides (Lapidot), b. March 6th 1921 in Wieluń;

Maternal grandparents: Yoshua-Moshe Lapides and Sarah-Ita Lapides;

Brother’s names: Yaakov Rajchman, b. December 15th 1941;

Husband’s name: Menashe Atar;

Date of Interview: Oct 10th 2007.

 

Ahuva Atar's mother, Sarah Lapides (Lapidot) was born in Wieluń on March 6th 1921 into a family of 12 children. Her father, Yoshua-Moshe Lapides and her mother Sarah-Ita Lapides were wealthy. They owned tool and construction materials' warehouses. They were very religious and had 12 children. All children went to school. Her mother graduated from high school. She spoke Polish and read a lot.

When WW2 broke out, Sarah Lapides and her brother Nachman were sent, on their parents' initiative, to the East towards the Russian border. Little is known about her whereabouts after they crossed into Russia, except that when her daughter Ahuva - Luba Reichman was born, she and her brother were living on a kolkhoz in Kazakhstan. They did strenuous work, in particular floating felled tree-trunks down the river. In exchange for which they received bread and water. That is where Sarah met her future husband, Joseph Reichman, who was born in Wurka [Warka] in 1916. Yaacov Reichman, Ahuva Atar's elder brother was born there on Dec 15th 1941 and Ahuva was born on June 26th 1943. In the kolkhoz were other married couples, but Ahuva Atar's parents were the only ones who had children. Ahuva knows that the other couples helped her parents raise them.

In 1945 the family had the chance to return to Poland, but they were forbidden to return to their home town; therefore they decided to live in Szczecin. Sarah Lapides sneaked back to Wieluń to see what had become of her parents' possessions. She was very disappointed since the locals were unwilling to cooperate with her and did not provide her with any information. She never went back again.

Ahuva Atar's father, Joseph Reichman, set up a small factory that manufactured shoes on 4 Bogusława St. Next door he opened a small shoe store. He did well in his business so Sarah did not have to work. Ahuva went to school and recalls the cold, bitter weather and the frost. She recalls riding sleds in the winter. During school vacations, the family used to go to a wooded resort area by the lake.

The family immigrated to Israel in September 1950 on board s.s. "Galila."

They left Poland empty-handed since the Polish authorities did not allow them to take anything but the bare minimum. They had a very rough time en route. The sea was stormy and Ahuva remembers feeling sick all the time. They reached Haifa and were taken to Sha'ar Aliya, a new immigrants' camp near Atlit.

Some time later, the family moved to Beer Ya'acov to an apartment in a nearby-vacated British camp. That was the first time Ahuva ate olives and oranges. Life was not easy there. Ahuva remembers that her mother was miserable most of the time. The family stayed there for two years. Afterwards, the family moved to Yahud, and about 8 years later, they moved again to a rented apartment Tel Aviv. Her parents worked hard all those years. However, they never considered returning to Poland.

Joseph Reichman died in 1993, and some time later, her mother moved to Rishon Lezion, next to her brother Ya'acov Reichman. She volunteered in various organizations as long as she could. She died in 2000.

Ahuva graduated from a vocational school in Tel Aviv and joined the army. After her army service, on March 1st 1967 she married Menashe Atar. Her husband, Menashe died at an early age in 1990. […]

 

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