Wednesday, April 20, 2022

91-Year-Old Holocaust Survivor Perishes in Mariupol, Ukraine, Basement


As she lay dying in a Mariupol basement, freezing and pleading for water, Holocaust survivor Vanda Semyonovna Obiedkova wanted to know only one thing: “Why is this happening?”

Ill and emaciated during the last two weeks of her life, the 91-year-old could not even stand up. She died on April 4, not peacefully of old age in her own bed, but as a victim of the horrific 21st-century war that has engulfed her hometown.

“Mama didn’t deserve such a death,” says Obiedkova’s daughter, Larissa, through tears, just hours after arriving with her family in a safe location.

She had watched helplessly as her mother’s life ebbed away, remaining at her side until the last moment. After her mother passed away, Larissa and her husband risked their lives to bury Obiedkova, amid non-stop shelling, in a public park less than a kilometer from the Azov Sea.

“The whole Mariupol has turned into a cemetery,” says Rabbi Mendel Cohen, director of Chabad-Lubavitch of Mariupol and the Ukrainian port city’s lone rabbi. Obiedkova and her family had long been active members of Mariupol’s Jewish community, the matriarch regularly receiving medical aid from Cohen’s synagogue.

“Vanda Semyonovna lived through unimaginable horrors,” the rabbi says. “She was a kind, joyous woman, a special person who will forever remain in our hearts.”

Full story here


  1. Russian state TV hosts giggle uncontrollably as they discuss NUKING New York

  2. 'White but not quite' I have not read the book.

  3. Germany and France watch Ukrainian defence war

  4. Ukrainian dog scared by explosions.

  5. Antisemitism in th USA.

  6. Russian hate speach in Sweden, subtitled.

  7. Oliver Stone shows himself to be as bad that we thought he was.(
    Anders Åslund)

  8. Sen. Rand Paul (Kentucky) supports Putin.

  9. Jerzy!

    About "White but not quite":

    I know the concept, if not necessarily the book [and it is probably used a lot in academia and especially in Diaspora Studies]. A long-standing friend of mine referred to it in their dissertation about the Australian-Irish diaspora especially where families were involved. [2008]

    It really is a catchy phrase.

    Adelaide Dupont

    1. I do not see 'racism' in Poland as a problem. Several countries in the region have problems with Gypsies, but the split is cultural and criminal, not only racist. There are immigrant MPs

  10. AJC loves Poland

  11. Rabbi Poupko "I'm looking at you Austria, Poland" - Austria was Nazi, Poland was anti-Nazi and lost between 2 and 3 million ethnic Poles.

  12. Constructive opinion

  13. Please comment the "Maus" article

  14. Rabbi Poupko comes from Belarus. Radun was near the pre-war Polish-Soviet border, the 'local collaborators' were Belarus.


Bieganski the Blog exists to further explore the themes of the book Bieganski the Brute Polak Stereotype, Its Role in Polish-Jewish Relations and American Popular Culture.
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