Lost Childhood
Holocaust Child Survivors


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The children from Marquain, Belgium (1947-1948) Reunion after 60 years in Israel 6/11/2008

SAMUEL BAKMarquain is near the town of Tournai in Belgium, close to the French border. The activists of the Jewish agency, Aliat Hanoar and the Jewish Brigade, organized the "Alia" Of the children from the Holocaust to Israel. Most of them orphans, from all over Europe. The children were placed in a old castle house. They divided into age groups. The relationship remained mostly between the same age group. There was also some relationship with the bigger brothers from other groups. Some special brotherhood developed among the children of the "different planet"… a brotherhood that remained for many years. As a matter of fact, until today. As children we experienced traumas of loss, and the scars that were left, were the reason for this special "sticking together" between ourselves. From the dining room I recall some pictures: two long lines of tables, and two large pictures decorating the wall. One, the map of Israel and the second the Exodus from Egypt.One of the characteristics of the house in Marquain, was the double stair case at the front of the house. The stairs Created a triangle shape leading up to the main door at the top. Life in Marquain, gave as back our lost childhood. We learned together to read the Hebrew language, and we worked in agricultural works and other house tasks. We were prepared for the emigration, "Alia" to Israel. This wonderful change, granted us with an experience that we all missed so much.

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