Children's Homes in France During the Holocaust

Château de Chabannes

Personal Stories

The Ochsenhorn-Hochbaum Family

Friedrich-Freddy Ochsenhorn (later Shalom Karni) lived in the OSE children's homes in Chabannes and Montintin until he was moved into hiding with a Christian family.

Friedrich's parents, Chajim Ochsenhorn-Hochbaum and his wife Riwka-Regina née Spiegel, were born in Poland and resided in Vienna.  Chajim was in textiles, and owned a big store in the city. Their only son Friedrich was born in 1929.  In 1938, the family left for Belgium, intending to immigrate to the US, and in 1940, when the Germans occupied Belgium and France, they fled to France.  Chajim enlisted as a volunteer in the Polish Army in France, and was imprisoned in the Le Vernet camp.  Because of the US immigration papers in his possession, he was transferred to the Les Milles camp. Riwka held refugee status, and thus wandered from place to place through France.  While living for a time in Montpellier, she was caught and interned in Drancy.

Riwka had already sent Friedrich to the OSE homes in 1940.  He stayed in Chabannes with his cousin Daniel Ochsenhorn, was transferred to Montintin, and from there he was moved into hiding with a Christian family.  After the liberation, he was living in a children's home near Lyons and it was there that he learned about his parents' tragic fate:  they were deported to their deaths in Auschwitz in 1942.

In 1946 Friedrich immigrated to Eretz Israel through the Youth Aliyah and lived in Mikveh Israel.  In Israel he was reunited with his aunt, his father's sister, Perel-Pepi Rauchman, who had immigrated in 1934.

In 1955, Shalom Karni (Friedrich Ochsenhorn) submitted Pages of Testimony in memory of his parents, Cajim and Riwka.

The Jassy Family

Shalom Salomon Jassy lived in the children's home in Chabannes for several months in 1943, together with his sister Antoinette (Tammy).

Their parents, Adela-Chaya Felder and Yakow Jassy from Poland, met in France where they got married.  They lived in Strasbourg and had two children, Antoinette (b. 1933) and Shalom Salomon (b. 1936).  Adela and Yakow were French citizens, and the family led a traditional Jewish life.  In 1939, the Jassys moved to the town of Terrasson in the Dordogne, in south-west France.  Antoinette and Shalom went to the elementary school in Terrasson, while their father Yaacov served in the Foreign Legion and their mother Adela made a living buying and selling clothes.  When the hunt for Jews in the area began, Yaacov fled and attempted to reach Switzerland. He was caught in the town of Brides-les-Bains and sent to Drancy.  In October 1943, he was deported to Auschwitz.  He did not survive. 

Adela entrusted her children to the care of the OSE, and stayed in Terrasson, where she posed as a deaf-mute and was assisted by her neighbors, the Brusseau family.  Antoinette and Shalom Salomon were brought to Chabannes in 1943, where Shalom was given a French name, Serge Javert.  A few months later, the OSE decided to close the children's home at the Château de Chabannes, and to disperse the children.  The siblings were separated: Antoinette was sent to live on a farm, while Shalom was taken to two Christian families, and then to a convent near Rodez. There, Simone Stolze-Coqué, resistance fighter and later Righteous Among the Nations, took him under her wing.

After the liberation, Adela and her children were reunited in Terrasson.  They returned to Strassbourg, and immigrated to Israel in 1949.

In 1957, Adela-Chaya Jassy submitted a Page of Testimony in memory of her husband Yakow.

Two postcards sent in October 1944 by Simone Stolze-Coqué, later recognized as Righeous Among the Nations, from the convent in Rodez to Adela Jassy in Terrasson. She writes that she plans to bring Adela's son, Serge (Shalom Salomon's name in hiding) to Terrasson: