Iser Cukier (born Iser Cukrowski) the youngest of seven children, was born in Częstochowa, Poland, where his family owned a large bakery that was located in the same building as their apartment. An older brother advised him to learn a trade rather than attend high school. He became a men’s tailor and, when that proved insufficiently challenging, he moved to Lodz to learn women’s tailoring and then to Warsaw and Katowice to attend design school. Eventually he had his own shop in Zawiercie, employing ten people and supporting his mother. He also married and had a child. His wife and son and the rest of his family were murdered during the Holocaust, but Iser was kept alive as a slave laborer making German uniforms in a factory in Zawiercie. For a time, after the slave labor workshop was disbanded and most of the workers deported, a sympathetic officer hid him on a Luftwaffe base. In May 1945, after liberation, he made his way to Paris, where he worked as a designer and met and married Tola Gottlieb. They immigrated to the United States in 1952.
Of Blessed Memory
1909 – 2004
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©2013 Midwest Center for Holocaust Education
Testimonies may be used for individual research with proper citation. All other uses require written permission from MCHE. The above video testimony is edited from a full-length testimony that may be viewed onsite at the Midwest Center for Holocaust Education or at the Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies at Yale University