Bronia Bronkesh

Bronia Bronkesh was born in 1921 in Sarny, Poland. With the outbreak of World War II, the Bronia and her family had to evade the Nazis by traveling through many different countries in Eastern Europe. That did not stop her love of education for she attended university and three years of medical school. Bronia already knew how to speak Polish and Yiddish, but in order to be successful in school she learned the languages of the countries her family was in during the war. The family traveled through Russia, Armenia, and Germany in order to continue their evasion of the Nazis.

After the liberation of Europe, Bronia moved to New York with her husband, mother, and infant daughter in 1947. Bronia and her husband relocated to New Jersey, and then to Arizona where they both lived. Bronia passed away on December 25, 2015.

Now travel back in time to take the same journey that Bronia had during World War II. Learn more about the places and people that she interacted with during the war.

A Wealth of Knowledge

Bronia Bronkesh was born Bronia Cimmerman on April 22, 1921 in Sarny, Poland. Her father Shaye worked in lumber and her mother Elke was a homemaker. She lived near her grandparents, aunts, and uncles. In 1923, her grandmother’s sister in Detroit…

Early Years of World War II

In 1939, after Hitler and Stalin divided up Poland, Sarny became part of the Soviet Union. Bronia had the opportunity to repeat a year of high school in Russian and learn the language. She did so because Jewish graduates of a Russian high school…

Medical School and Marriage

In the summer of 1944, Bronia and her family heard that Kiev was liberated. They left Armenia and traveled to Kiev. In Kiev, Bronia continued her studies in the medical school there and Bella went to university. They both lived in the dorms where…

New Beginnings in America

Bronia’s mother had a brother living in Detroit and a sister and brother in New York. In Munich, Bronia’s mother met an American Jewish Army captain and he helped her contact her family in the United States as she did not know their address. The…