Gitla Doppelt

Gitla Doppelt grew up in Byten, Belarus, surviving first the Russian occupation and then the Nazi takeover and ghettoization, all before she was 14.  Her family, including brothers Israel and Chiya and parents Samuel and Frieda Slonimski, escaped to the woods and joined a band of partisan fighters.  While with the partisans, Israel and Gitla were separated from their parents, and Chiya was killed.  Gitla and her brother Israel were reunited with their parents after the war.

Gitla married Felix Doppelt while living in a displaced persons camp in Italy.  They moved to Kansas City, Missouri, in 1950.

She was moved to tears while watching the film Defiance.  “I was very happy to see, at last, a monument to my brother,” Gitla said. “He wanted people to know how we went to the forest and how we were fighting.”

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Family photographs are the property of the survivor’s family and are used here with permission. Portraits are copyrighted by the Midwest Center for Holocaust Education. No photographs may be used or reproduced without permission.

©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.

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