Original Post: http://www.reddit.com/r/pics/comments/2b8uo3/my_grandfather_is_a_holocaust_survivor_that_is/

My name is Max Glauben. I am a survivor of the Holocaust, the Warsaw Ghetto and its uprising, Majdanek, Budzyn, Mielec, Wieliczka, Plaszow, Flossenburg Concentration Camps and the "Death March to Dachau". Please, no questions about Israel/Gaza. I do not feel that I am knowledgeable enough about the situation. My grandson will be typing for me so that we can answer as many as possible in the time that I have!

Proof: http://m.imgur.com/UEMqz2h

EDIT: Thank you guys for the questions! I am really glad that I got to do this and I hope I was able to answer some of your questions! I am going to go back and answer some more questions later but in the meantime here is some more information in an article that they did on me in the Dallas Morning News:


Comments: 1436 • Responses: 17  • Date: 

DownvoteDaemon737 karma

I hope this is not disrespectful but do you still have flashbacks if any at all?

txbex1219 karma

Yes, I still have flashbacks. My wife tells me that I even get tremors and cry out in my sleep from time to time.

belgian_here589 karma

My question : How are you today ?

txbex1206 karma

I'm great! Thank you for asking. I just returned from Germany and saw some of the places where I worked and was able to get some copies of my records. They had 5 records with my name in it in Flossenburg.All throughout that time I was a nobody but this gave me validations that I was actually someone.

AcuteAppendagitis516 karma

Thanks for doing this AMA. It takes real courage to talk openly about such a terrible experience, and it brings a sense of realism back to it for a new generation.

I was wondering if you had any guards (or other Germans) that were sympathetic to your situation or treated you with kindness in the camps? I'd imagine they would be risking their own lives by doing so.

Edit: Spelling

txbex1045 karma

Yes, there were some secretly sympathetic soldiers (Vermacht). If there were not any good people among the bad ones, none of us survivors would be here.

archeologist2011462 karma

Where did you go right after you were liberated? Also, how was the transition back to a life where you were free and what did you do/where did you work?

Thanks for doing the AMA!

txbex975 karma

After being liberated we were not allowed into homes of German residents because they feared of what we might do to them so we were looking for shelter in displaced person camps. While on the road looking for a DP camp, I was picked up by a Lieutenant with the 179 Signal Repair Corp of the US Army, given American clothing, and I was made a mess Sargent for German POWs and the Polish guards that were assigned to guard them. We settled at the Nuemayer Cable Works factory in Nuremberg, Germany.

I received American uniforms, I learned how to drive, I received food when they picked me up....it was a shock but it was actually easy for me. As a result, when I came to the states in 1947 I was drafted during the Korean conflict and I was again a mess Sargent with the 702 Armored Infantry Battalion of the first armored division. Life was definitely much better than before.

cat_with_giant_boobs438 karma

Were you taken to the camps by train? If so, what were the train rides like? Did you all know what was really going on? Thank you for your time

txbex1197 karma

Yes, after being discovered in the basements when the Warsaw ghetto was burned, we were taken to a designated place and put on a boxcar that took quite a few trips. When we got on, there were human remains on the floors, smells impregnated the boxcar from previous trips. They packed it to over full capacity (100+) people each car. A trip that should've taken 2 hours took 5 days. There was no food and no water. No bathroom facilities. The low roof of the boxcar with 100+ human beings resembles a lid on a boiling pot of water. People would reach up to get a drop of condensation to wet their lips because it's easier to die of dehydration than starvation. They were packed so tightly that people would die standing up. If you saw someone with their eyes closed, you didn't know if they were sleeping or dead.

BAR7MAN417 karma

What went through your head when you saw that your father's boots were there but he wasn't?

txbex1004 karma

It was the worst day of my life. He was the only one that was alive after our trip to Majdanek (where I lost my mother and brother and many other members of my family). Being 13 years old and not knowing whether I would survive alone is a horrific experience. BUT life must go on.

comatose95411 karma

what do you think of the people, who to this day, deny that the holocaust took place?

txbex1199 karma

I am glad that I live in this country that allows each citizen freedom of speech, assembly, religion, etc. And I'm glad that there are deniers that live in the same country that express their opinions so the citizens of this country can see how smart, or rather, how STUPID they are.

fortunefading372 karma

Thanks for doing this AMA! I just would like to ask how you kept yourself going? I'm sure there were many times where you felt like you were hopeless. I would also like to ask if you have forgiven the Nazis for what they did and if so, how?

txbex1711 karma

The mere fact that I was denied my life turned my defense system into overdrive and I always found away to survive. My strong religious beliefs also played a huge factor. Being the only person in my family that can carry on my name I used everything in my power to make sure that it survived with me. Also, music played a role in keeping me sane. I'm a "hummer" and I would hum while working and living in such savage conditions.

Hate is within the hater. It distorts who he is and also stays within him. The person that he hates sometimes doesn't even know about it. Hating someone is the equivalent of drinking poison and hoping that the person who he hates will die. I choose not to hate so that I don't become the person that applied hate to me.

Ps_21266 karma

When did you come to America and why did you choose to do so (as opposed to another place)? My family came before the Holocaust through Ellis Island and all that we know of their brothers/sisters/parents are that they went to Auschwitz and we know a brother (my great great uncle) that survived chose to go to France instead of the US. Thank you for doing this AMA!

txbex534 karma

Because I was picked up by the by a corps in the US Army. I was grateful for the opportunity to come to the US as an orphan and they gave me a life and I was willing to follow the trail.

PerspectiveofaProton206 karma

I'm sorry if this is a silly question, but what one key aspect of your perspective that has changed since World War II? In other words, how do you see life differently?

txbex643 karma

I see life differently now because the Holocaust didn't have to happen. People CHOSE to commit these crimes. Because of that I strive to help people make better choices and live to a higher standard of acceptance. I devote most of my time now to lecturing and making my presentations in a way that they would not create hate, the same hate that was applied toward us. And emphasizing that only through education, we can eradicate hate and become "Upstanders" instead of being bystanders like many of the people were during the period of WWII.

MrCream179 karma

After witnessing such atrocities, what advice would you give to the youth of today?

txbex686 karma

Get all of the education that you possibly can. Try to treat others the way you would like to be treated. Respect their right to exist and also their beliefs. In life, always do the best you can with what you've got and in some cases, never never NEVER give up. If it is not a matter of life and death, all problems can be solved!

escaday169 karma

Have you ever read "If this is a man" by Primo Levi, the Italian jewish survivor of the concentration camps?

txbex922 karma

Sorry, no. Honestly, I don't read books of other people's stories because I do not want to distort my memory of my story.

Velorium_Camper133 karma

Thanks for doing this AMA. There's a lot of bad and good in this world. What's the happiest moment of your life?

txbex463 karma

Life is like the Texas weather. There are Ups...there are Downs...we sometimes are down deep in the valley but sometimes we're up on top of the hill. I am happy to say that the great moments outweigh the bad ones. Among the highlights are my marriage in 1953, my kids being born, my 7 grandchildren being born, one of my grandchildren getting married. But the list goes on and on and more continue to develop!

Simond024117 karma

Have you actually learned something ( about people/relations) during your time in the concentration camps? Thank you for doing this AMA!

txbex276 karma

Because of the conditions that we were subjected to, each person becomes an island of his own. Unless it's family you really can't trust anyone so there was not much communication between people in the camps. We were also not allowed to roam so there was not a lot of opportunity to have social interactions.

whitegryffen112 karma

You have my deepest respect, are the memories still clear after all these years?

txbex239 karma

Thankfully, yes. Thank G-d that my memory is still clear and has been reinforced through my 9 trips on the March of the Living. It reassures me that all of the things that I speak about are still clearly preserved in my brain!

BlakalomyYoutube105 karma

How did it feel knowing that everything was over, and none of this will ever happen again?

txbex466 karma

It felt wonderful to be liberated, but unfortunately my liberation wasn't the end of it. There are still genocides in Uganda, Syria, and other places around the world. The liberation of some of the Holocaust survivors was merely a quick fix to help relieve our problems.

troy77742 karma


txbex316 karma

There were a lot of the things that I saw that were bad enough to put in this post. I would rather not describe them because it has the opportunity to create hate.