Hands belong to granddaughter Reesa Lerner.
Born January 18, 1913 | Gura Humorului (Gura Humora), Austrian Empire (later Romania)
Died August 10, 1976 | Calgary, Canada
Roza’s creativity, resourcefulness and kindness helped her and others to survive the Holocaust. She brought those same qualities to the task of building a new and better life for her family in Calgary.
Roza was the youngest of eight children—six boys and two girls—born to Nettie (née Reger) and David Walzer, a peddler. When she was only two years old, Roza’s father died due to injuries he had sustained as a soldier during World War I. Already poor, Roza’s mother was left on her own with eight mouths to feed. As soon as the children were old enough, they were sent to work. Roza, who became a seamstress, married Eli Feuerwerger in 1937; they settled in Campulung. Following the Nazi occupation of Romania in 1941, the couple was forced to billet a German soldier; fortunately, he treated them kindly, even sharing his food with them. Roza and Eli were eventually deported to Transnistria, a concentration point where Jews suffered cruelty including forced labour, hunger, disease, summary execution and deportation to death camps. Roza and Eli picked through garbage for discarded clothing. Using trashed socks for thread, they designed and sewed garments which they then bartered for food. Kind and caring, they shared it with starving friends and neighbours.
Following liberation, Roza and Eli went home to search for family. Two of Roza’s siblings had settled in New York prior to the war and it is believed that three others died of complications from diabetes prior to the Holocaust. Roza’s remaining two siblings survived the Shoah, later immigrating to Israel. Roza and Eli’s daughters Frieda and Penina (Penny) were born in Romania. Fearing continued Jew-hatred, the family immigrated to Canada in 1962, settling in Calgary where they reunited with Eli’s youngest brother, Benny Katz, who had preceded them. Roza’s family grew to include three grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.
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