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8 The Cellar

8 The Cellar

We were hiding in a small hotel, where Mother had found a job cooking and cleaning, but our house was hit when the Russian Army started shelling the city so we had no choice but to move to the basement where others were sheltering. We pretended to be Christian refugees from eastern Hungary. By that time the Red Army had surrounded Budapest. They bombarded the city heavily and then the Russian troops moved in, fighting from house to house to eliminate the desperate German Nazis and the Hungarian Fascists.
While the fighting was escalating the Arrow Cross were still, looking for Jews and deserters to kill. And they were searching for a certain fourteen year old boy, who they had been told, was still in the house. Mother had to use all her wit and courage to convince them of our story and our innocence. While she was arguing and attempting to reason with the Fascists, I was hiding above, behind a large drain pipe. These murderers promised to return next day and take Mother and my sisters away if I was not there. That meant they would be taken outside the house gates and shot. This had happened to other people that they had taken away. The Arrow Cross did not return next day, but the following day some Siberian soldiers of the Red Army broke through the cellar walls and searched the house looking for Germans. We were liberated.


Oil on Canvas 107 X 56 cms