Before His Father’s Eyes

Karol Frim was only 19 years old when he died in the Buchenwald Little Camp on 4 March 1945. He and his father Leon had survived the Przemyśl ghetto, various labour camps, Auschwitz, and the death march from Gross-Rosen to Buchenwald. In the Little Camp, everything was scarce. Food was distributed once a day in the cinema barrack. Admission was granted only to those who could present their food tags. The loss of one’s tag meant certain death.

Leon Frim had to look on as his son was denied access: “I saw the doorman asking Karol for his numbered metal tablet and I witnessed Karol’s consternation when, reaching into his pocket and finding the pocket empty, he understood that the tablet had been stolen from him […]. He was ordered to stay out of line. Words cannot render my wretchedness at the shocking occurrence. I implored the doorkeeper to let Karol in, but to no avail.” Karol Frim was committed to the infirmary soon afterwards. Eight days later he was dead.

(Michael Löffelsender)

Source: Leon Frim, Seasons in the Dark, Jerusalem 2011.