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My Three Lives
Some stories should not be left untold, and the life experiences of Philip Markowicz comprise one such story. In fact, when he looks back upon his past, Philip feels like he’s lived three lives, not just one. His first life was growing up as a young boy in Przerab, Poland. His father was a Chassidic Jew and a rabbi, and Philip and his loving family lived a happy life filled with tradition and religion.
But that was all disrupted and his second life began when the Germans invaded Poland at the start World War II. After Philip’s father became a target of persecution at the hands of the Nazis, his family fled their village for the larger city of Lodz. There they were soon moved into the ghetto. His family and the Jewish population became smaller and smaller as people died of starvation and exhaustion and the Nazis continued to “exterminate” Jews in their quest for racial “purity”. Of his large family just he and his brother, Henry, survived the ghetto only to be sent to Auschwitz and a series of other concentration camps ending the war on a death march that few survived.
Through faith and determination, Philip survived the Holocaust to start his third life, one of rebuilding in spite of what he had lost. He met and married his wife, Ruth, in a Displaced Persons camp, and they eventually moved to the United States, where Philip worked hard to give his wife and three children every opportunity his new country offered. He sought to move on from his past and for a long time he remained silent about the unthinkable horrors he had witnessed and the hardships he had endured.
As time went on, however, Philip realized his story needed to be told, if for no other reason than to memorialize his family and all the Jews who lost their lives at the hands of the Nazis. My Three Lives, by Philip Markowicz, is an inspiring story of a man who courageously endured hardship with faith and triumphed to rebuild his life and family with love.
About the Author
A native of Poland, Philip Markowicz has lived in the greater Toledo area of northwest Ohio for fifty-eight years and winters in Aventura, Florida. He is a retired businessman. Philip is an active member of the Jewish community through Congregation B’nai Israel in Sylvania, Ohio, and the Aventura Turnberry Jewish Center of Aventura, Florida. His interests include Torah and Talmud study.
Author profits for this book will go to the
Ruth Fajerman Markowicz Holocaust Resource Center of Greater Toledo
(2009, paperback, 388 pages)