Selma Engel obituary


Selma Engel with Chaim and their two surviving children Selma Engel with Chaim and their two surviving childrenALEXANDER PECHERSKY FOUNDATION

It was the most extraordinary, heart-breaking backdrop for a love affair: the Nazi death camp of Sobibor, set in a remote woodland area near the River Bug in occupied Poland, where at least 250,000 Jewish people were being assembled in the spring of 1943 and systematically murdered.

There the sadistic guards made some of the prisoners play music and dance near the fires on which thousands of bodies were burnt. One of the dancing couples was a young Dutch Jew, Saartje Wijnberg, later known as Selma, who had recently arrived from the Netherlands in a sealed freight train, and Chaim Engel, a former soldier in the Polish army who had been at the camp for several months.

They shared not a word of a common…

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