In May 2004, we first learned that our relatives, including five of my father’s first cousins, were alive and well in Germany, Belarus, and Israel. The news came out of the proverbial blue and for the next half-year, we exchanged letters and phone calls. We walked around as if in a dream. Overnight, I went from having a very small family to a large one. My emotional world had expanded at the speed of light. Through all of our family history research, we never thought to look for our relatives, so certain we were that they had perished. How we were brought together–the improbable climax of an eight year-long project translating the old letters into English–involved a magic potion of equal parts good luck and serendipity. How it is our relatives survived so that we might meet again is an equally incredible tale.
Both stories are reprinted in two Belarus SIG newsletter stories that can be found through the links below
From November 4-8, my father, Jerry Schechter, and I were reunited with our relatives in Nuremburg, Germany. Seventy years of separation were over. A photo of this amazing event can be found at the bottom of this page.