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See more of the Virtual Museum of Canada

Before the War
The Holocaust
Liberation
Displaced Persons Camps
Where Can We Go?
The Journey
Welcome to Canada
New Lives
Canadian Immigration Overview
VII. Becoming Canadian
I had always wanted to be an electrical engineer. My mechanical and electrical aptitude had helped save me during the Holocaust. As a forced labourer in a munitions factory, it had been my job to monitor ten machines and repair them when they broke down.

Instead, I went to night school and got a diploma in accounting because it was a quick way to get a job. I desperately wanted to be on my own and independent. In 1952, I brought my sister and her family over from Israel. By then it seemed too late to go back to school to study electrical engineering.

I worked for Sam and Lena Hanen in their store. When I got my accounting diploma, I worked in the office. They were good years and I learned a lot from Lena.
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Robbie's Map
I. Skarszysko, Poland
II. During the Holocaust
III. Rediscovering Freedom
IV. Orphanage
V. Finding a Home
VI. Coming to Canada
VII. Becoming Canadian
Holocaust
The mass murder of nearly 6 million European Jews by the Nazis and their collaborators during World War II. Many individuals and groups were persecuted and suffered during the Holocaust, but only the Jews were targeted for total "extermination". The term literally means a burnt sacrifice, or sacred burning. The biblical word "Shoah," meaning catastrophe, is the Hebrew equivalent.