Imagine having survived the Holocaust, only to learn your entire family was killed by the Nazis. Undoubtedly, such would be hard to swallow, but it’s a truth 102-year-old Eliahu Pietruszka managed to cope with.
At the age of 24, Pietruszka moved away from Poland to escape the start of WWII. He left his entire family behind, including his younger brother, Volf. Though Volf survived the Nazi death camp, where the rest of his family perished, he was sent to a Siberian work camp. It was there Eliahu believed he had died.
However, thanks to the aid of an organization, the centenarian learned this was not actually the case. As a result, the man who believed his entire family had died was recently able to meet his nephew.
It turns out, Volf made it through the war and settled in Russia. The survivor’s grandson later found a testimony in records at Yad Vashem, Israel’s office commemorating the victims of the Holocaust, filled out in 2005 for his older brother, whom he thought had died.
GoodNewsNetwork reports that Alexandre, Volf’s only child, still lives in the same Russian village his father had. After learning about Eliahu, a reunion was organized. With tears streaming down his cheeks, Eliahu cupped his nephew’s face and said he was a “copy” of his father.
“I have waited for 70 years to see you. 70 years,” Eliahu told his nephew.
After decades of believing his family had died at the hands of Nazis, the 102-year-old learned he isn’t truly alone in this world. As a result, he says, he feels like the meeting has provided a fitting end to a long, eventful life.
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