"Stay Together"

The Fate of Jewish Families in 1944

The Drimer Family

Bârsana, Romania

In 1944, the family was sent to Auschwitz
The Drimer family in Bârsana, early 1920s

From right: Pinhas Drimer wearing Romanian army uniform, 1920s

Pinhas Drimer and Feiga-Fanny née Kamishov on their wedding day, Romania, 1935

Additional photos »

Yishayahu Drimer before the war.  Yishayahu was murdered in the Holocaust

Moshe Drimer before the war.  Moshe passed away in 1940

Lana-Leah, daughter of Sarah and Yaakov Forkash, before the war.  Lana-Leah was murdered in the Holocaust

Pinhas Drimer and his son Emil in Galaţi, Romania, 1938-9

Emil Drimer and his baby sister Ilona, 1946

The seven Drimer siblings, Sarah (b. 1894), Shtul (b. 1896), Yehuda-Arye (b. 1898), Yehiel (b. 1901), Yishayahu (b. 1906), Pinhas (b. 1909) and Moshe (b. 1913) made a living in trade and agriculture.  Most of them married and raised families, living close to their parents in Bârsana and the adjacent Sighet.  Their parents, Rachel and Yitzhak Drimer, passed away before the war. Their youngest brother Moshe, passed away in 1940.

In the course of May and June 1944, most of the family members were deported from the ghettos of Sighet and Vişeu de Sus in northern Transylvania to Auschwitz, where the majority were murdered.  Out of some fifty members of the Drimer family, only Pinhas Drimer, his wife Feiga, their son Emil and their nephew Rachmiel survived.

Sarah Drimer, her husband Yaakov Forkash, who owned a grocery store, and six of their seven children were murdered in Auschwitz.  Two of their children’s names are known to us:  Leah and Berel.  The sole survivor of the family was their son, Rachmiel Forkash, who returned to Sighet after the war and served as a rabbi and shochet (ritual slaughterer) there until his death in 1998. 

Shtul Drimer, her husband Israel Brana, who was a shop-owner, and their children were murdered in Auschwitz.  We know that one of their children was called Hirsch. 

Yehuda-Arye Drimer, a laborer, his wife Shoshana and their children were murdered in Auschwitz.

Yehiel Drimer, a shop-owner, his wife Rachel and their children were murdered in Auschwitz.

Yishayahu Drimer, a salesman in Sighet before the war, was murdered in Auschwitz, as was his wife Shoshana and their children.

Pinhas Drimer left Bârsana after his mother’s death in 1926 and enlisted in the Romanian army. Upon completing his army service, he moved to the city of Galaţi, Romania, where he married Feiga-Fanny née Kamishov.  In 1937, their son Emil was born.  In 1940, Pinhas, Feiga and Emil moved to Bessarabia to live with Feiga’s family.  In 1941, they were all deported to Transnistria but in 1942, Pinhas, Feiga and Emil managed to escape to the Soviet Union.  They lived in Uzbekistan, and were eventually sent northwards towards Siberia.  In the course of their wanderings, they had a second son who died at 11 months, and in 1945, their daughter Ilona was born. Pinhas and Emil returned to Sighet in 1947.  In 1952, they were reunited with Feiga and Ilona in Sighet, and in 1964, the family immigrated to Israel.

In 1999, Rachel and Yitzhak’s home in Bârsana was taken apart and moved to the Sighet Village Museum, where it is referred to as “Casa Rabi Drimer.”

Support for the Exhibition comes from the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany