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Slava Frumkin


The Altshulers family.
The Altshulers family with the eldest
children, Riva and Zyama.

My mother, Rahil Moiseevna Frumkina, was born in Bobr shtetl (Belarus) on 5 January, 1919. Her parents, Moisei and Khasya Altshuler, had eight children. In 1926 in Bobr there lived 2483 people, 1018 among them were Jews. Of eight children only three survived World War II, Zyama, Riva and Rahil.

Before the war, Rakhil and infant child lived at her parents’ in Bobr. After the occupation of the shtetl, she was taken to the ghetto. On 10 October, 1941, right before the shooting of the Bobr ghetto prisoners, she escaped from it and moved to the Smolensk region. In December 1941, Rakhil joined the underground group which later repositioned to the Vadensky woods, where it was reorganized into a partisan unit named after Shchors.

Rahil was granted a lot of orders and medals. After the war, Rahil and her husband lived in Borisov, brought up three children. She died on 1 April, 1985.

The sisters who remained in the ghetto, Genya, Roza with her two daughters, Emma, brother Motik, the parents were shot on 10 October, 1941, together with other ghetto prisoners. All in all, 961 people were killed. For me and my family, it’s not just 961 killed people. Eight of them were our family. They will remain in our memory forever.

My grandfather Moisei (Moshe) Altshuler was born in the period from 1875 to 1885. We, his grandchildren living in the USA, know little about him. He was poorly educated, but was a brilliant violinist. He worked as a carrier. He was shot in the Bobr ghetto.

Rakhil Frumkina.
Rakhil Frumkina.
The 1970s.
The Altshulers family.
The three survivors, Zyama, Rakhil and Riva
at the mass grave
of the ghetto victims in Bobr.

Grandmother Hasya (Hashe) was born in the period from 1880 to1885. According to my mother’s recollections, she graduated from a gymnasium in Moscow or Saint Petersburg, which was rather rare for a Jewish girl at that time. She was able to bring the spirit of intelligence and the desire for knowledge to the family. She used to organize family concerts with her husband and children. She was shot in the ghetto in Bobr.

Genya was born in 1909. Before the war she lived in Borisov, worked as an accountant. There’s a documentary proof that she was shot in the Borisov ghetto.

Roza was born in 1915. Before the war she with her two daughters came to her parents to Bobr, where later they were shot. To my pity, I don’t know the names of the girls.

Emma was born in 1917. She lived in Borisov, taught Yiddish at a school. I haven’t found her name in the list of those who were shot, but we are sure that she died in the Borisov ghetto.

Motik was born in 1923. He finished high school just before the war. He sang beautifully. He was shot in the Bobr ghetto.

The fascists ruthlessly crushed these young lives, but we, the ones who live, must remember them. As Robert Rozhdestvensky’s song has, “…and I live on this kind land for myself and that guy…”.

We are to live for ourselves and for them!

Jewish settlements in Minsk region

MinskBerezinoBobrBorisov DolginovoDukoraDzerzhinsk Ivenets Myadel NesvizhObchuga Pogost Rakov Seliba Slutsk Svir Uhvaly Vileika

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