Some say it’s luck, others call it intuition- Paula will tell you it is some of both. Paula admits that she is uncertain of how she cheated death on numerous occasions. If you ask her, she shrugs her shoulders and replies, “I don’t know, I was young, maybe I was smart, I just don’t know…”
When Chaim Rumkowski, the Jewish leader of the ghetto, placed her name on the deportation list, she knew it meant certain death. Unsure of what to do, she ran away and hid, saving her life.
When the ghetto was finally liquidated Paula was deported to Auschwitz. There she found herself in a line. “There were always lines. I didn’t know which line to go in, to the right or the left. First I got in one line, then I changed my mind and got in the other line. I don’t know why, I just did it.” Had Paula remained in the first line her life would have ended in the crematorium; intuition saved her again.
“It’s something that I can’t forget. It comes back to you. I never told my kids, I was embarrassed to tell them what I went through.” Now she tells her story because, “I hope never again — everyone should believe. I don’t want anyone to go through what we went through.”