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Germany - MDA Israel Reunites Siblings After 64 Years

Published on: December 1, 2009 03:35 PM
By: MDA PR
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Lena, 85, and Victor, 73 reunited after 64 years. Photo credit: MDALena, 85, and Victor, 73 reunited after 64 years. Photo credit: MDA

Germany - Lena, 85, and Victor, 73, were too choked up to speak when they first met each other after not having known of one another’s existence since the end of WWII. The meeting took place recently in Australia, where Lena has lived for years without knowing that her long-lost brother was alive.

In 1945, the chaotic situation after the war led to the separation of the two siblings, who had been living in Rostov, Ukraine. In 1965, Victor turned to the Red Cross in Russia, asking for information on his missing family but got no answer.

In 2007, Liz Soda – the daughter of Lena – turned to the Central Tracing Service of the Red Cross in Germany, asking for information on the Bogdanovich family of Rostov. She learned that although no documentation on the family was found, a man named Victor had in the past made a similar query. Liz immediately understood that this was her lost uncle, and she began to search for him – but he had moved to Moscow and could not be found.

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The story of the Bogdonavich search was raised at the annual International Tracing Service (ITS) convention this year in Bad Arolsen, Germany – and listening attentively were representatives of Magen David Adom’s Tracing Service. With the help of Yolenta Michaeolova of the Red Cross in Russia, MDA’s Susan Adel and Eli Starik began working on the case, and within days they were able to locate Victor’s son living in Moscow. When they told him that his aunt and cousin were looking for his father, “He was so excited that he could barely speak,” Adel said.

Victor decided to fly to Australia to see his long-lost sister Lena, where they had an emotional reunion.

Lena’s daughter Liz said afterwards, “Our story is typical of what happened to many families of that period. We are thrilled that my mother was able, with the help of Magen David Adom, to find her brother whom she thought she would never see again.”

MDA acknowledges that its tracing service is not well known, Director Borya Kozokin says, “But we have been involved in finding lost persons for many years, with great success. Most of our work centers around those who have lost contact with family members during and after World War II.”


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Read Comments (4)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Dec 01, 2009 at 05:21 PM devora Says:

What a beautiful story!!!!

2

 Dec 01, 2009 at 07:48 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #1  
devora Says:

What a beautiful story!!!!

Indeed beautiful, but sad at the same time. How many lost years of sibling companionship, all because of these Nazis yemach shemom v'zichrom

3

 Dec 01, 2009 at 11:55 PM Milhouse Says:

About 10 years ago I helped make a minyan in the hospital room of an older chossid who was saying kaddish for his mother on the correct yortzeit for the first time. He was separated from his parents in the War, and never saw them again, so since then he had been saying kaddish for them on a date he chose (I think asoro beteves). But that year he had found out that his father had indeed been killed, but his mother had survived, and had died only 10 years earlier, on that day. For more than 40 years mother and son had each thought the other was dead, and unfortunately they never met in this world.

4

 Dec 03, 2009 at 01:24 AM Anonymous Says:

amazing story boruchashem they found each other.
anyone have a problem with them holding each other is a real sicko

5

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