This is new information about what actually happened when the Nazis “Aryanized” the Berlin Department Store founded in 1900 by my grand uncle, “Sally” Rehfisch, and his partner, Hermann Joseph. More details about the people involved, before, during and after the war, in this update of my 2019 post, “Diary of a Department Store”.
Family, Holocaust, and more . . .
The German artist Gunter Demnig, who originated the idea of the commemorative stepping stones, remembers the victims of the Nazis by installing memorial brass plaques on the pavement in front of their last known address. He cites the Talmud saying that “a person is only forgotten when his or her name is forgotten.” The Stolpersteine…
This is the true story and inspirational legacy of a little girl, who fled the Nazis in 1939, and ended up in Scotland, where she lived the rest of her life. And currently, the affect it’s had on Scotland, Germany and now Perth, Australia.
All the trials and tribulations that led up to the actual creation of “For the Life of Me”.
What Did They Have In Common? In Poland, no one writes about the tragic fate of homosexuals during the Nazi era. Nothing has been published about the thousands of Polish homosexuals who became death camp victims. Ordinary embarrassment is the … Read More
Last fall I received a flyer from Amilie, my friend in Berlin, as a reminder that the 9th of November is the day to commemorate Kristallnacht. One could also consider it the beginning of the Holocaust. It is Amelie who … Read More
Author’s Note: Also see my follow-up to this post, A New Look at “Diary of a Department Store”. For those of you who are new to my Blog, most of my stories are based on the research I originally did … Read More
A quest for info on my grandfather’s fourth brother, Gerhard Rehfisch, took a dozen years to show results: Amelie, of Berlin, stumbled across a single Stolpersteine — or “stumbling stone” in English, and put it together with my search request from 2006 still online . . . talk about serendipity!
I am Pete Vanlaw. Originally I created this blog to document my quest to uncover my family’s past, which had been hidden from me for over 50 years. This culminated in the making of a documentary film, For The Life of Me, that I am particularly proud of. I continue to write about my family’s history and the Holocaust in general, but this blog has expanded to include other aspects of my life growing up in Los Angeles and working in the entertainment industry for 40+ years.
Want to stay in touch?
Subscribe here to stay current with blog posts and upcoming events.
Stories about unrelated subjects such as Music, Automobile Racing, Travel, Social Networking, and more.
Here are some posts about the 40 wonderful years I worked in entertainment and advertising.
Stories from others that parallel or compliment my own.