Molly Greenberg, was born on December 22, 1924, in an Eastern European Jewish shtetl called Skala Podolska in Poland. An orphan by age three, she was raised in poverty by five older siblings. Her world was shattered on September 17, 1939, when the Soviet army seized control of Skala. This was the beginning of the end of a flourishing Jewish community. By the end of July 1942, the German military was in control of the area.
Molly survived by pretending she was Mary, a non-Jew. She lived in constant fear of discovery and extermination. By the end of World War II, only one hundred and fifty out of two thousand Skala Jews survived. Molly married another survivor. In January 1949, following a few years in a displaced persons camp (where a daughter was born), they came to America to start a new life. In December 1950, another daughter was born.
Growing up in Brooklyn, her children were only told that the Nazis murdered their father’s father, his sister, and their mother’s entire family. This part of Molly’s life was off limits—too painful to talk about.
When she entered her sixties, during a senior writing class, Molly finally faced her painful past. This book is about her life, in her own words. Her ability to survive and thrive serves as an inspiration to us all. The stories were found in a long-forgotten case, hence the title, Secrets in the Suitcase.