By Linda Chase
The memory of every Torah in Poland being destroyed during the Holocaust devastated survivor Sam Ron. Recently Sam and his wife, Bilha donated a Torah to the Toby and Leon Cooperman Sinai Residences in Boca Raton. While attending the ceremony, I decided I wanted to interview this couple. I was invited to the couple’s home and Sam reflected on his life, detailed in his memoir “A Jewish Journey: Surviving and Thriving in Poland, Israel and the United States” (can we purchase on Amazon).
“I was born in 1924 with the name Shmuel Rakowski in Kazimierza Wielka, Poland. My father’s name was Jozef. He had a successful Lumber business. My mother, Sofia, was a homemaker who came from a religious family. My family was well-to-do, but not rich. Life was nice in those years prior to the war. I attended polish public school for seven years and excelled in my studies. I had good relations with fellow students and neighbors. It helped that I spoke perfect Polish in school. The other Jewish children in the school spoke Yiddish as a first language. I attended Hebrew school at the same time. Antisemitism was rampant but the town’s Jew-haters left me and my family alone. We were respected as business owners who lived in the town for generations. My parents instilled pride in me and my younger brother, Yulik. From a young age, I knew my family was among the most respected Jewish families in town. My father was a Zionist who believed that the Jewish people deserved to have their own country in Eretz Yisrael.” Sam explained how life selling changed in September, 1939.
Read more about Sam Ron’s ‘Jewish Journey’ here.