Hana Fuchs Krása

* 1923  †︎ 2015

  • “It really started for us in 1938 when Hitler occupied Austria. My mother’s sister lived with her husband in Austria and in June, they moved to Prague. They were the ones who told us the horror stories about Jews being beaten on the streets, having to wash the pavements… but they were not taken, because they were still the Czech citizens so they did not touch them. They got an apartment next to us. That was the year the Czech chauvinism was very high. They were screaming: ‘We will never give up, we will fight!’ That summer there was like the Olympics of the Czech organization called Sokol. All the schools took part in it. So we marched through Prague. I marched with my school and my brother took part in it with his school. We were all very chauvinistic, like we will fight the Germans and we will never give up. My uncle, who came from Vienna, was always pouring cold water over us and telling us: ‘Today they scream ‘we will never give up’, tomorrow, they will scream ‘Heil Hitler!’ And he was right.”

  • “You know, it was very interesting. I thought I could kill any SS with cold blood. In 1945, when they started, they have marched them … they were toned, they were dirty, they were not spick and span with these high boots SS, I suddenly did not hate them so much. They looked so vulnerable. I do not think I could kill anybody even though I thought I could.” - “Did they become people again in some way?” “In some way they looked worse than we did. However, in 1947, I went to England and on the way back I brought some oranges, I had one-year-old nephew… my brother had a child with my sister-in-law. We went through Nuremberg, which was all destroyed, and I enjoyed that very much. We stopped on the station and I had these oranges and chocolate in my trunk that my friend gave me for everybody. They were begging for food, those children. I said: ‘no way I give you German children anything.’ I could look at them begging for food and I did not feel pity at all. I know I was awful, I know I am biased all my life and it is not good, but I just could not get rid of that. That time, in 1947, it was too early after the war. Now, I am different.”

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We believed that no one would kill 100 people at once. How foolish we were – they murdered six million people

Krasa Fuchs Hana
Krasa Fuchs Hana
zdroj: USHMM

Hana Fuchs Krása was born on 24 September 1923 in Prague. Her mother came from a wealthy Jewish family. Her father, who was also of Jewish origin, worked as the director of a food factory for Odkolek stores. Hana had a brother, three years older, with whom she enjoyed a carefree childhood until the end of the interwar years. Although her parents insisted that their children be well-behaved and study well, they also took them on holidays to the countryside or to the sea every year. After the Anschluss of Austria, her mother‘s sister with her husband moved from Vienna to Prague, bringing with them testimony of the atrocities committed against the Jews. It did not take long for the gradual restriction of Jewish life to catch up with them. After Hitler invaded Czechoslovakia, her father immediately lost his job. Hana stopped going to school and her mother arranged for her to work in a dress-making workshop. They only met with their friends on weekends and only at someone‘s house. Theatres, cinemas, parks and squares – Jews were suddenly forbidden to go to all these places. Hana had a boyfriend who was deported to Terezín. There, he put her on his list of relatives, and in this way the young girl got into the ghetto, where her then 88-year-old grandmother was already. She died just three weeks later. Soon afterwards her father, mother and brother also arrived in Terezín. While Hana worked in agriculture, which allowed her to improve her otherwise very limited access to food, her brother worked in a bakery, and even he was able to bring the family at least a piece of bread now and then. Thanks to his contacts in the ghetto, her father had earned a good position and worked in local government. However, as the people in charge of the Council of Elders changed, he gradually lost his influence, and in the end, he was unable to prevent the deportation of the family, of which only Hana remained in Terezín. Her father was executed by the Germans before he could even board the transport to Auschwitz. Her mother was probably sent to the gas chamber as soon as she arrived because she was considered too old. After the liberation of Czechoslovakia, Hana found herself completely destitute and had to fend for herself for the first time in her life. She lived in rented rooms and worked as a secretary. In 1947 she stayed briefly in the UK and on her return, she started to go out with Edgar Krása for the second time, who also survived Holocaust. Together they moved first to Israel and later to Boston in the United States. Hana died there in 2015. RECORDING SOURCE: https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn514105