Survivors' Stories

“The opposite of love is not hate, it’s indifference.”
Elie Wiesel

Elisabeth Citrom

  • From: Romania (Targu Mures)
  • Liberated from: Austria (Lenzig Slave Labor Camp)
  • Deported to Auschwitz-Birkenau from: Romania/Transylvania (Targu Mures ghetto)
  • Current Location: Sweden (Stockholm)
  • Year of birth: 1931

Brief Bio

Elisabeth Aviva Schrieber Citrom was born in Targu Mures, Romania in 1931. Her parents Leopold and Malvina raised Elisabeth and her brother Isador in a traditional Jewish home.  Elisabeth’s grandmother Bluma Salomon was a very important figure in her life.  From 1940 they experienced overt antisemitism which Elizabeth felt from her teacher and classmates. Elizabeth’s father was prohibited from practicing his profession, in fact his legal practice was taken over by his former employees. He was beaten and robbed.  Elisabeth’s house was seized and the family moved to her grandmother’s farm.

The Hungarian Gendarmerie (police forces,) who were often locals, carried out its government’s anti-Jewish laws. 

“In 1944 – the end of April beginning of May – we were taken to the ghetto – we were placed in and old brick factory. At the end of May we were taken to the station to begin our journey to the former Nazi death and labor camp Auschwitz -Birkenau. My mother was going to help my 72-year-old grandmother into a truck. It was the last time I saw her. I stayed in Auschwitz until November 1944 in the children’s barrack. Then we were taken to the labor camp Hamburg-Altona. A few weeks later we were taken mainly by foot to Lenzig in Austria. We were liberated by Americans on May 9th, 1945. My father and brother survived Bergen Belsen and come to Sweden but it took five years before we found each other.”

Months after the liberation, Elisabeth made her way to the Land of Israel.  She served in the army, helped build a kibbutz, became an active member in a youth movement, studied and practiced nursing and met her beloved husband, George. 

Elisabeth and George moved to Sweden and had two children who had three children each.

My message to the next generation is…
“I am who I am today thanks to Israel. I became a person again.”