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Amsterdam, Netherlands

When Philip and his mother returned to Amsterdam, it had only been a short time since the liberation of the Netherlands. Food and other supplies were rationed. Jewish people who survived and returned to Amsterdam had lost most if not all of their family, their homes, jobs, and all their belongings. Starting over was very painful and difficult. Mina and Philip were given some help from a Jewish man who had been their neighbor before the war. His name was Elkan Speyer, and he was also a survivor. He had been in hiding in an attic with his family for three and a half years. About a year later in August 1946, Mina and Elkan married. The following year in July 1947, their daughter and Philip’s half-sister, Regina, was born. Following the war Elkan opened an antique store in Amsterdam, but it was a difficult time to earn a living. Life was not easy for the family, and there were many bad memories and loss to overcome. The family decided they wanted to put the memories behind them. The plan was to immigrate to the United States, but that was no easy task. There were obstacles to overcome before immigrating to the U.S.A. would be possible.