Aron and Minna Zack's Passport
Aron and Minna Zack lived in Neidenburg, in Eastern Prussia, Germany, with their children, Paula, Julius, Kurt, Helmut and Annie. Aron was a trader.
During the Kristallnacht pogrom, SA men burst into the Zacks' home in Neidenburg. Aron, who was standing at the entrance of the house, was stabbed in the stomach, and jumped out of the window. Minna heard the tumult, came to the door and was stabbed in the neck. Kurt and Helmut tried to fight the mob and were stabbed on their hands and arms. Local policemen were called in, and brought the children to the municipality cellar to protect them. Minna haemorrhaged heavily, and did not survive the night. That same night, the city's synagogue was demolished.
Aron, Kurt and Helmut went to hospital for treatment, where they met Julius Naftali, another relative who had also been brutally stabbed. Julius Naftali, who was married to an Aryan woman, died of his wounds that night.
After recuperating, Aron managed to leave Germany together with his children, and left Hamburg on 12 May 1939 on a ship bound for Argentina.
In 1962, two of the rioters who had stabbed Julius Naftali to death on Kristallnacht stood trial in Germany. Kurt Zack came from Buenos Aires to testify against them, and broke down in tears during the trial. The judge noticed the long scars on his arms, reminders of the night his mother was murdered. When asked about his feelings, he replied that he did not seek vengeance. He expressed pity for the wives and children of the accused. The rioters were convicted and given short prison sentences, five and three years respectively. Minna's murderers were never brought to trial.
In 2011, as part of the ongoing "Gathering the Fragments" project, Aron and Minna's granddaughter, Marion Freiman, donated Aharon's passport to Yad Vashem for posterity.