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Wayne Holocaust Survivor, 91, Rattles Off Horrors Testifying In Trial Of Nazi Guard

Asia Shindelman, 91, of Wayne, is testifying as a witness in the trial of former Nazi guard Bruno Dey, in Hamburg, Germany.
Asia Shindelman, 91, of Wayne, is testifying as a witness in the trial of former Nazi guard Bruno Dey, in Hamburg, Germany. Photo Credit: Christian Health Care Center

A 91-year-old Holocaust survivor from Wayne is contributing witness testimony against a Nazi during his trial in Germany.

Asia Shindelman does not know Former Stutthof SS guard Bruno Dey personally but is speaking publicly about the horrors that she and others in the camps were subjected to, the New York Post reports.

Dey, 93, has been charged as an accessory to the murder of more than 5.200 Jews in 1944 and 1945.

This trial may be the last opportunity to hear from living witnesses, according to Claims Conference Executive Vice President Greg Schneider.

A great-grandmother, Shindelman was born Asia Levin in Lithuania, in 1928. She attended a private Jewish school until the Russians occupied the city in 1940, when buying food and walking on sidewalks became banned for her and others, The Post says.

Shindelman and her parents were taken to Poland's Stutthof camp in 1944. Her grandmother was taken from her family and sent to the gas chamber, while Shindelman and her family were beaten as soon as they arrived to the camp, she said.

The remembers seeing the guards laughing as they tortured their victims. She recalled a mock executions in which a Nazi held a gun to her head, entertaining himself and others.

Shindelman rattled off horrors in a quote to the New York Post:

They threw women to the dogs, [who] ate [people] like meat," she said. They threw you to the [electric] fence and in one second you were dead. If you had a gold crown, they would open your mouth and rip it out — if you died, you died.

Shindelman was used for slave labor, digging trenches until being liberated with her mother by the Soviet Army on March 10, 1945.

The then-16-year-old was hospitalized for five months and almost had her leg amputated.

She met her husband, a veterinarian and survivor of Stalin's gulag, in Latvia in 1948, according to The Post. Shindelman became a chemical engineer and moved with their two boys to Queens in 1991 following communism's fall in Latvia.

It wasn't until after she came to the U.S. that Shindelman began to speak of the horrors she endured.

And she won't stop until Dey walks away a guilty man, she says.

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