Prisoner Number A26188: Henia Bryer

Prisoner Number A26188: Henia Bryer


Henia Bryer has vivid memories of Dr Josef Mengele choosing which new arrivals would live or die at Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp. “He just flicked his finger. Left to the crematorium, right to the camp.” To mark Holocaust Memorial Day Henia is interviewed by her niece, film-maker Lisa Bryer. What emerges is a harrowing, crystal-clear monologue. Henia and her family were removed from their home in Poland to be transported to a series of camps, each more terrible than the last.


The story of a Jewish girl who lost her father, brother and sister during the Nazi occupation of Poland in the Second World War. Now in her eighties, Henia's testimony begins with her family's removal from their home in Radom, to the ghetto, then on to Plaszow concentration camp, Majdanek, Auschwitz and finally Bergen-Belsen. She describes the horrors she experienced and how, through a combination of her own resourcefulness and luck, she survived, witnessed the birth of Israel and eventually started a new life in Africa.