Caller tells James O'Brien astonishing story of how his parents hid from the Nazis

27 January 2020, 13:35

A caller told James O'Brien about how his German parents fled the Nazis and managed to be the only family members not to die at Auschwitz.

Rolf, told James O'Brien, about his family's experience of the Holocaust.

His mother's family fled to Holland from Germany. She then met his father in Amsterdam.

Then, Germany invaded Holland. There, of the 120,000 Jews who lived there, only 7,000 survived.

His parents survived by fleeing Amsterdam and living in a farmer in the north of Holland.

The farmer dug out a space in a haystack.

Rolf said: "They were hiding for four years in a haystack and only could come out at night."

Caller tells James O'Brien astonishing story of how his parents hid from the Nazis
Caller tells James O'Brien astonishing story of how his parents hid from the Nazis. Picture: PA

The rest of his family were sent to the gas chambers in Auschwitz.

In the last winter of 1945, his parents "were literally eating grass in the streets and anything they could find in dustbins".

James O'Brien: "How did your family cling onto the notion that most people are good?"

He said that his parents didn't really want to talk about their experiences and he was too little to ask.

James O'Brien asked how did Rolf cling onto that notion then.

He replied: "Although it was my family, it was no different the way I sort of, like other people, it's just history. I was never part of it, it was only what I was told. In a way, I was an outsider like everyone else."

Rolf then read some of the records of the Germans about his mother.

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