Holocaust Survivor Remembers D-Day - New York News

Holocaust Survivor Remembers D-Day

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Almost seventy years later, Susan Cernyak Spatz's number is still etched on her forearm. It's a reminder of her time at perhaps the most infamous concentration camp: Auschwitz .

She eventually went to Canada, a more liberal part of the camp. On June 6, 1944, she was allowed to see a dentist to have a tooth pulled.

The beaches at normandy had just been stormed. No prisoners were told, except susan.

"I don't remember whether it was the dentist or the assistant who heard it on the radio," she recalls. "We couldn't let anybody know we knew. Because where would we have gotten the radio from?"

It would still be more than six months before she would taste freedom.

She was eventually sent to Ravensbrück, a different concentration camp.

 In negotiations with the Germans, the Americans picked her camp, and asked for the women of Ravensbrück to be released.

By the time the Red Cross came, she was already released, walking to find freedom. She and her group eventually came up on an American check point. She asked the guard where to go and he replied, "wherever you came from." When she showed him her number and explained that she had been in an extermination camp, the GI asked her, "What the hell is an extermination camp?"

The fact that Americans were unaware of what she went through lead Susan to share her story.

"If survivors refuse to talk about it all they do is bury the dead all over again. If we forget, it'll happen again."

 
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