family Memorial.
Nina Kowner


Szepsel Kowner
Zlata Kowner

Benjamin Lewi

Fajga Lewi

Tanja Oppenheim
Mary Garfinkiel
Josef Kowner

Zina Kowner
Aniuta Glazer
Lazar Kowner

Eljasz Kowner
Pessa Kowner

Leon Kowner
Nina Kowner

[pages in progress]



Pessa (Lewi) Kowner

(a.k.a. Pola Kowner)
14.3.1902 Lodz - 27.8.1944 Auschwitz-Birkenau

Born Pessa Lewi, the youngest child of of Benjamin and Faiga Lewi. The youngest sister of Maita (Lewi) Hochenberg, Wowo Lewi, Lola (Lewi) Adler, Mendel Lewi, Dawid Lewi, Rachel (Lewi) Adler, Regina (Lewi) Rubinek.
Wife of Ilia Kowner and mother to Leon and Nina Kowner.

She grew up in Lodz and studied in Krakow.

Pessa Kowner was exterminated by the Nazis in August 1944. She was forty two years old.

Pessa Kowner, c. 1935


By Leon Kowner

"My Mother, Pessa (Pola), played the piano and spoke several languages such as Polish, German, French, Russian and Yiddish. Highly elegant in her style as she would sometimes wear a vail and used Chanel 5 perfume. My mother and my father used to go biking in their vacations across Poland.

"Unlike her other siblings she went to a secular education. She graduated the doctorate program in humanities in the Jagiellonian university, Krakow. She studied there together with Zina Kowner, who introduced her to her brother, Ilya Kowner. They married on 12.5.1926 in Lodz.

"In 1927 I was born, and eight years later, in 1935, my younger sister Nina was born.

" I remeber mother being very active and a fighter in the good sense.

"During the ghetto's first two years my mother opened a laundry in our small apartment. I helped her a lot and would carry the laundry to distant places in the ghetto where we would heat up the vat and then I would carry it back. Later on, due to the high inflation it didn't make sense to go on working the laundry. Later on, she found the almost impossible job in a factory kitchen and would give her personal ration for the sake of us, her children."

"At the end of August 1944 Ghetto Litzmannstadt was being evacuated and we were among the 70,000 people who were sent by trains to Auschwitz-Birkenau. We were a few thousand people in that freight train and that included my parents, my sister and me. The train arrived inside the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp. At first they a separated between the men and the women. My father and I, we passed the selection and stayed within the temporary living.

"A year later I met a friend who survived the war and she told me that the S.S. doctor took out her mother and Nina and ordered them to the death side and herself and my mother to the living side. Nina yelled and our mother, Pola, jumped to the death side. That was the last day in the life of my sister Nina and my mother Pessa Kowner."


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