My mother was born in the small town of Kiralyhaza, known today as Korolevo, on the border between the Ukraine and Romania, where her father presided over the Jewish community. When we visited there in 2002, only ruins and my grandmother’s orchard were left of the former community. All 678 Jews were deported in May 1944, first to the nearby ghetto of Nagyszölös (Vinogradiv), and weeks later to Auschwitz.
Edith says that she survived because of her eyes, when she was selected to do fine mechanical work in a Czech/German factory. Aside from an uncle and a cousin, all of her other family members perished during the war. She married and lost her first husband within a few years after liberation, and then was introduced to my father, who came from the same general area of Carpatho-Ukraine. They settled in Vienna, started a textile business, and supported several of my father’s family members who managed to survive. My parents were married for 60 years when my father passed on in 2011. Edith continues to live in our family home near the Naschmarkt in Vienna and enjoys looking at her collection of Hungarian porcelain and family memorabilia.