Into the For­est: A Holo­caust Sto­ry of Sur­vival, Tri­umph, and Love

  • From the Publisher
September 1, 2020

A grip­ping sto­ry of love, escape, and sur­vival, from wartime Poland to a wed­ding in Connecticut.

In the sum­mer of 1942, the Jew­ish Rabi­nowitz fam­i­ly nar­row­ly escaped the Nazi killing squad ter­ror­iz­ing their Pol­ish home­town. They fled to the for­bid­ding Bialowieza For­est where they mirac­u­lous­ly sur­vived for two years. Of the 800 Jews from their town who hid in the for­est, bare­ly 200 sur­vived, just a tiny num­ber of them chil­dren. Lib­er­at­ed in 1944 by the Russ­ian Army, they crossed the Alps on foot ille­gal­ly as refugees, set­tling in Italy in DP camps for almost three years before final­ly immi­grat­ing to the Unit­ed States.

One of the (many) remark­able twists of fate in this fam­i­ly’s sto­ry is how dur­ing the first ghet­to mas­sacre Miri­am Rabi­nowitz saved a young boy named Philip Lazows­ki by pre­tend­ing he was her son. Many years lat­er, a chance encounter at a Brook­lyn wed­ding would lead Philip‚ now a stu­dent at Yeshi­va Uni­ver­si­ty, to find the woman who saved him. After vis­it­ing the Rabi­now­itzes in Hart­ford, Con­necti­cut he began court­ing Miri­am’s daugh­ter Ruth (who was also at the ghet­to selec­tion that day). Over the course of two Catskills sum­mers, the two fell in love‚ and are still mar­ried today, 65 years later.

Based on years of research, and Frankel’s exten­sive inter­views with mem­bers of the fam­i­ly, as well as oth­er sur­vivors, Into the For­est is the rarest of Holo­caust sto­ries with a hap­py end­ing and a pow­er­ful tes­ta­ment to the human spirit.

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