Wyszkow, Poland Yizkor Book

SEFER WYSZKOW, ed. D. Shtokfish, 1964 Tel Aviv.

Page 193
Translation by:  Edward Jaffe
Translation donated by:  Rona G. Finkelstein
Put on the Web by:  Michael R. Tobin


In a pocket of a perished Jew from Rovno, who was the head of the Vishkov Yeshiva and later became the Rabbi of Rovno, the following letter* was found:

To our Jewish brothers:

Our time has come.  Like all other Jews subjugated by the Evil Empire, we give our lives to God, blessed be he.
I am Abraham, son of Shmai Halevi Tsitrin, born in the town of Trachenbad.  My father was Shmai Tsitrin, born in Vald, the son of the exalted Rabbi Meyer Zeev.  My parents lived in Rovno.  My father with his son-in-law Itzchak Chekhnizer, the ritual slaughterer and congregational messenger, were killed last year in Rovno.  My mother Sarah Rivka, daughter of Eliokem Getzel Gelman of Trachenbad, together with the entire family were killed by the murderers in Rovno.  We have relatives in America.  My mother's brother, Joseph Gelman, my wife Bella, daughter of Yakov Arye Steinman of Viskov near Warsaw, member of the large family Steinman of Amselof.

I am leaving behind in Pobrusk two houses with many things hidden in the walls.  Furniture and other things are left with the Ukrainian clergymen.  Find our relatives and see to it that our bones will not be scattered and our names not forgotten.

Our relatives should say Kaddish and observe annually the day of our death.  I Abraham, son of Shmai Halevi and my wife Bella, daughter of Yakov Arye, who has a brother in Russia - Zvi Steinman, say goodby to this foolish world.  My dear son Meyer Zeev, 9 years old, my daughter Chaya, 6 years old, my daughter Masha, 3 years old, my mother-in-law, Chava Ziatah and her son Moishe, and daughters Chaya Sarah and Yentah Hadassah, her daughter-in law, wife of the above mentioned Zvi who is in Russia with her three small children and her mother - all of us are being sacrificed in His Holy Name, together with the 70 families of Pobrusk, and 15-20 families from Piasetchny.

Don't forget us, the murdered innocent.

Hear, 0 Israel.  The Lord is our G-d, the Lord is one.

Abraham son of Sarah Rivka

*This letter was brought to the USA by Rabbi Moishe Steinberg of Brod, who visited Rovno after the liberation in order to once again organize a Jewish community.  This is a reprint of the letter which was published in the "Day" (Tog) of December 16th.  This is a document of the awful period.  The letter conveys a cry from a life that refuses to give up and disappear without a trace, and wants to be remembered.  It describes what Abraham, son of Sarah Rivka, felt in the last minutes of his life when he saw no escape from the hands of the murderers.  This was also experienced by thousands, hundreds of thousands of other Jews.

Abraham, son of Shmai Halevi cries out at the threshold of death to search for his relatives and requests that his and his family's bones not be scattered, and that they be remembered.  He also asks that relatives say Kaddish (prayer for the dead) and observe the annual day of their death.

Michael Tobin
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