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Moise Gani

Preveza, Greece

Moise's family were Romaniot Jews, a group that had lived in Greek cities and the Balkans for 1,100 years. In the early 1920s Moise's family moved to Italy, where his father tried to find work. Moise attended school, and when his family returned to Greece after two years, he remained in Italy to complete school. When Moise returned to Preveza at age 17, he had forgotten Greek.

1933-39: Moise worked as a bookkeeper and administrator at the local electric company in Preveza, and he lived with his parents. Moise liked to picnic with his friends at the shore of the Ionian Sea. Sometimes he invited his younger brothers and sisters to come along.

1940-44: The Germans invaded Greece in 1941, and took over the region where Preveza was located in the fall of 1943. In March 1944 the Jews of Preveza were deported to Auschwitz. There Moise was assigned to Birkenau as part of the Sonderkommando, a work unit that took corpses to the crematoria. On October 7, 1944, the Sonderkommando in crematorium IV revolted, killing an overseer, disarming SS guards and blowing up the crematorium. Soon, others in the Sonderkommando, including Moise, joined in the uprising.

Moise was killed in Birkenau in October 1944. He was 31 years old.

 

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