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Holocaust Survivor Oral Histories

From 2003 through 2013, Professor Uta Larkey from Goucher College (Baltimore, MD) conducted a class that required students to interview Baltimore-area Holocaust survivors.

INTERVIEW 1: Life Before World War II

INTERVIEW 2: Experiences During the War Years

INTERVIEW 3: Liberation and the Aftermath

Biography

George Rabinek was born on July 1, 1929 in Berlin, Germany and spent a good part of his younger years in Hungary. In the early 1940s, anti-Semitic laws were put in place in Hungary, and in March 1944, Germany invaded the country. In October of that year, Nazis captured George and forced him into slave labor, digging ditches along the Danube River. Two months later, he was sent to the Buchenwald concentration camp where he worked as a tool mechanic. By the time World War II ended, George lived in three different camps after Buchenwald: Ravensbrück, Bernberg Euthanasia Centre, and a camp in Neubrandenberg, Germany.

Following liberation, George traveled to displaced persons camps to find his family—at times acting as a translator for the British army—and found one of his sisters. In 1947, he received a visa for the United States. On November 17, 1946, he left for the States and arrived in New York, where he was diagnosed with tuberculosis and hospitalized until 1950. In 1950, he moved to Baltimore to join his sister and attend drafting school. In 1954, he married his girlfriend, Helen, and in the same year, his daughter Susan was born. His two other children, David and Robert, were born in 1958 and 1961, respectively. George became a licensed architect in 1970. He and Helen divorced in 1976, and George married Roberta in 1986. George retired from his profession in 1995. He volunteered at the Baltimore National Aquarium and continued to tell his story to surrounding communities in Baltimore.  He passed away on August 29, 2014.

Goucher College Library, 1021 Dulaney Valley Road, Baltimore, MD 21204 • 410-337-6360 • © 2013-2017 • Creative Commons License
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