I AM Albert Finkelstein.
Today I am 4 years old. I will always be 4 years old. In a little over 3 weeks time I should have been 86 years old. You see? I Was born on September 28th. 1929. I lived at 99 Avenue Simon-Bolivar, in the 19th. District of Paris. That is in France. I lived with my Parents, Camille and Sabine. Due to the efforts of someone called Adolf Hitler, and those who followed him, I was finally deported to Auschwitz on Convoy 63, on December 17th. 1943, and so I will remain forever, 4 years old. I will not be seen! I will no longer grow! I am no longer alive!
Along with other Jewish People, we had been assembled in Drancy and were then removed toward the Railway line. Then we all made our way toward another terrible place. There were 850 People on that Convoy, Men, Women and other Children, all Jewish. On December 20th. 1943 the Train pulling all this Human Cargo arrived at another Camp, we then knew it was Auschwitz. There were two distinct lines of us Jewish People. For what reason we were separated, I did not then know! But 233 of the selected Men, and 112 of the selected Women moved off to the main Camp.
We Children, there were 99 of us, though our line was mainly the line of the Elderly, there were the sick also. We were gradually moved away from the other line! I was not the Youngest on this new line. There were Babies! 505 People now in this line, all Jews. From here I recall so little of what was happening but I knew we were being moved elsewhere. We made what seemed such a long journey appear short as the seeming adventure grew within some of us? I realise now though that I have been Murdered at the hands of this Hitler and his like minded killers. So the adventure was not as welcome as we might have expected. The Murderers of Children, Old, Men, Women – all Jewish – stand before you, accused.
I cannot now grow old. I will not be Forgotten thanks in part to those like Beate and Serge Klarsfeld who chose to Remember Me and have done much to ensure I will not be Forgotten! My presence upon this Earth means I have existed! Danuta Czech, although she did not record my personal arrival, has acknowledged I was amongst those arrivals at the Gates of Auschwitz. It is known that I took that fatal journey and through those very gates on toward the Gates of a further Hell. It is duly noted that I am amongst the final 505 of us who made our last journey together on this awful day.
Though I can barely recall my Death, I Remember it! Though the burning sensation which filled my lungs, from the Zyklon Gas, no longer lingers, I can Recall the terrible feeling which drenched my mind with heat, fire, scalding my insides. I was fortunate from then, to be looking down when the scorching heat of the Krematoria took hold of my lifeless body. I recognise now that I am amongst My own People Gassed in Birkenau. To all those others, like My Uncle Sophia and Simon Ceausu who registered my presence to Yad Vashem, Jerusalem, that is in Israel. That very proof of my existence is more than Hitler had expected from us Jews. I may be just 1 of 1,500,000 other Jewish Children caught up in the Catastrophe for the 6,000,000 of us Jews of The Holocaust, but I am Remembered.
Why am I here? Because I am a Jew! Why am I telling you this? Because there are those who do not wish for my existence to be Remembered. Because I am a Jew? Because We are Jews? Because I am 4 years old? There is a Memorial plaque which recognises my existence but I would still have liked to have become a Person! A grown up! Please Always Remember Me! Never Forget I am Albert Finkelstein.