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Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Desider Stern - 1948-49

In 1948, The communists forbid Mr. Stern to leave Hungary.

At that point of time, Mr. Stern remembered the brother of a friend (Mr. Glant or Glanz) whom he saved the life in Theresienstadt. Through the secretary of Mr. Elbl, Mr. Stern got in acquaintance of a military courier who was traveling between Budapest and Vienna. Through him, he could send 1 Kg packets to Dr. Armin Glantz. (the most important: Winter clothes). Mr. Stern was bringing the packets to the train station, saluting the courier  with the "hitler greeting" in front of the nazis and handing over the packet direction Theresienstadt. Mr. Stern was also sending packets to other people but none survived.

He received a job offer from Mr. Glantz to lead a factory in Prag who sent him a certificate of citizenship (Nobody knew that Mr. Stern couldn't speak czech).

Mr. Stern went to the Czech consul, who was a jewish communist (Mr. Stern knew his brother) and asked for a Czech passport, which was granted... he had to because the papers were from the new government.

The problem was that he only had the passport for his person... his wife didn't.

On the 6th of December, all foreigners were due to leave hungary. But Mr. Stern was probably too valuable and the authorities didn't want to let him go, and told him he wouldn't see his wife if he goes.

For Mr. Stern, it was no option to stay in a communist country.
There were some organized smugglers...

Mr. Stern travelled to Vienna with 50US$... met Mr. Elbl who asked him if he needed money. The answer was yes.
A friend of his brought some molds from Budapest and the business Stella started.

What about the wife?
The smuggler was caught, the wife was jailed. But Mr. Stern's lawyer and Mr. Stern's letters pleaded for her liberation, and Mr. Stern's wife was granted a Passport to travel abroad and join her husband in Vienna 10 months later.

The business was already running in Vienna so they stayed there, if Mm. Stern wouldn't have been caught... they probably would have moved on.

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