There is a place in Nowy Targ which for the Holocaust Survivors from Nowy Targ is linked to the most difficult moment of their life. This is a sport stadium which exists till this very day and a train station next to it. It was there that on 30th August 1942 they were separated from their loved ones. This is how the community of the Jews from Nowy Targ ceased to exist. On a horribly hot Sunday morning the Jews from Nowy Targ and Podhale, who had found themselves on the stadium in the last days of August deported there from their hometowns, passed through a two-leaf gate. They went through it along with their families. A long table stood on the other side of the gate. A Gestapo officer sitting behind it made the decision, which for many meant the first separation of the day: the elderly, the sick and disabled were told to go the left. All the others (over two thousand) formed two columns and stood in rows of 10. Next, their names were read: 258 boys and men and only 10 women who left their line, not knowing what would await them. They did not know that they were those who were regarded as fit for work and kept alive. Till the end of their life they had to live knowing that they had no possibility of saying goodbye to their families, their siblings, their spouses and children… because everything happened so fast – among beatings and cries of the German officers. Persons, who were directed to the left side of the stadium, were shot a few hours later at the cemetery. All the others (mainly women and children) were chased away to the train station and loaded inside the cattle vans. They died a few days later in the death camp in Bełżec. Among them were the parents of Julek Schneider, who is staring at the building of the train station in Nowy Targ – the silent witness of their drama. At the Memorial Site in Bełżec you can find a symbolic plaque which commemorates the Jewish community of Nowy Targ. We would like the stones with engraved of names and last names of those, who had been members of that community home town and perished in the Holocaust, to be placed in their home town.
Written by Karolina Panz
Translated by Magdalena Macińska