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OLYMPIA FIELDS - Alexander White, a 70-year-old physician, opens his sturdy

red vinyl address book to the name Emilie Schindler and lays it on the long oak

dining table in the great room of his home.

White recalls meeting Mrs. Schindler in 1944 while he was a prisoner in a

Czechoslovakian concentration camp factory called DEF Works that was owned by

her husband, Oskar. White was in the infirmary having a tooth pulled and the

woman brought him soup.

Although White saw Oskar Schindler every day in the factory, he said during

a recent interview that he never met the man who would become the subject of

Steven Spielberg's Academy Award-winning movie, "Schindler's List."

Schindler is remembered for taking a personal risk to save more than 1,000

Polish Jews from certain death by transporting them to his factory disguised as

laborers. The intent of the factory was to produce bogus shells for German guns

in the final months of the war, while providing a haven for Jewish prisoners

otherwise destined for death.

It was not until 38 years later, in 1982, that White learned he was one of

those prisoners. He and the others were removed from the Plaszow concentration

camp in Cracow, Poland, and sent to Brinnlitz, the site of Schindler's Czech

factory.

White will be the featured speaker during a Yom Hashoah, or Day of

Remembrance, ceremony honoring those in the Holocaust, the Nazi rampage that

claimed the lives of 6 million Jews and countless others from 1939 to 1945. The

ceremony will begin at 8 p.m. Thursday at B'nai Sholom at 4508 Baring Ave. in

East Chicago.

White and Ina, his wife of 41 years, have remained in contact with Mrs.

Schindler, the same way he continues to stay in touch with many of the other

people in his address book.

In a way, it is a book of life.

By the time White arrived in Brinnlitz in October 1944, he had lost his

father, mother, sister and two brothers, as well as countless relatives from

his hometown of Krosnow, a city in south Poland.

"I never knew there was a list. In 1982, a neighbor called to tell me about

the book 'Schindler's List,'" White said, reviewing a copy of page 5, where his

given name, Alexander Bralywlos, is No. 269.

He wanted to learn how he came to be on the list.

So White referred again to his address book and called a friend and fellow

Plaszow camp survivor, Frieda Frankel, at her home in New York. "Frieda was No.

49 on the list. She said, 'Oh sure, there was a list.' I asked how I got on the

list. She said it was just plain 'mazel.'"

Mazel is a Yiddish word that means luck, but White said it wasn't luck that

saved him from Auschwitz.

He was a skilled worker, unlike most of the workers making pots and pans in

Schindler's Deutsche Emailwaren Fabrik.

The Jews of his native Krosnow were forced into a ghetto in 1942. The ghetto

was actually a city block with a brick wall and a gate at each end, White said.

His family shared one room with aunts, uncles and their children until the

ghetto was liquidated at the end of the year. More than half of the residents

had been sent to Belzec concentration camp in July. The camp was liquidated

that year as well.

Other ghetto residents, including White's mother and sister, were killed in

mass executions carried out in a forest nearby.

In 1943, both of his younger brothers were killed. One died in Auschwitz.

The other was shot "as an example to the other children" when he was caught

trying to mail a letter to a non-Jewish family friend who had agreed to relay

messages between separated family members, White said.

He and his father went to work at an airport near Krosnow controlled by the

Luftwaffe, the German air force. In early 1944, a new set of troops brought

about 400 Russian workers to the airport. White, his father and about 120 Jews

then were sent 100 kilometers away to Plaszow.

In May, White saw his father for the last time after a selection procedure

in Plaszow. "We called (the procedure) the naked parade. That's where I lost my

father and my cousin. They perished in Auschwitz. My father was 50 and my

cousin was in his 30s," White said.

"Now I was alone. Nobody else from my family was alive."

At Plaszow, White worked with the glazers and painters. But they were pulled

off that detail as the Soviet troops began moving toward Cracow. The Nazis

wanted to burn the tens of thousands of bodies lying in shallow mass graves

surrounding Plaszow. Camp prisoners were forced to help them.

"And then, in October, for one reason or another, I was attached to a

transport going to Brinnlitz," White said.

The movie "Schindler's List" depicts a dramatic scene in which a trainload

of women is wrongfully sent to Auschwitz. White said a train filled with male

prisoners also made a stop at the Gross-Rosen concentration camp.

The event was horrible, he said. The men were removed from the train and

jammed into a single room. To fit inside, they sat in long rows with their legs

spread apart, one man's chest pressed into the next man's back. There was no

way to move and no way to get out.

Eventually, they were loaded back on the train and rerouted to Brinnlitz and

the DEF Works factory.

Liberation came in spring 1945.

In the years since, White has managed to stay in contact with other

survivors while pursuing his career.

He studied medicine in Munich, moved to the U.S. in 1950, served as a

captain in the Medical Corps of the U.S. Army and taught as an associate

professor of medicine at Chicago Medical School in Lake Forest.

He said he obtained a complete copy of the list of workers sent to Brinnlitz

because it's a part of his history and he wants to share that with his children

- Denise, 41, Les, 38, and Julie, 34.

"Losing your freedom, and especially if you didn't experience the Holocaust,

is difficult to understand. That's why people don't talk about it," he said,

taking out a plastic bag containing several old black-and-white photographs.

He turns the faded yellow loose-leaf pages in his address book and matches a

photo to the name and address of his cousin, a woman who lives in Tel Aviv.

The cousin survived a Siberian concentration camp and managed to save

original prints of photos of family and friends, taken before the Holocaust.

White had reproductions made.

The photo he matches to the book shows seven pretty teen-age girls,

including his sister, Miriam. Of the seven, only his cousin survived.

White said he thinks Spielberg made a tremendous contribution by making the

movie, but it's important to remember that it is just one story about one man.

"Oskar Schindler had what Mrs. Schindler called 'Menschlichkeit' - humanity.

Mensch in Yiddish is a special word (difficult to translate). My father's last

words to me as he was walking away, because he knew where he was going, were,

'All I want is, promise me to be a mensch.'"

"Here is a movie about a 'mensch' - a man with humanity in him," White said.

"He came to Poland to make money. But being a mensch, he soon saw what went on.

He did everything he could. He finagled and he saved so many people.

"I've always said that in every human being, there is a spark of humanity

and sometimes it shows itself. It would be an injustice to the thousands of

Poles who helped Jews survive if one doesn't mention and give credit and salute

them."

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