American Travels to Kazakhstan to Seek Information on Father’s Fate in 1940s

Since 2022, U.S. citizen Jeff Scheingold has been looking for any information about his close relatives who fled to Kazakhstan to escape the Nazis. Kazakhstani police officers helped him find out about the fate of his father, mother and brother.

Scheingold asked the Kyzylorda Region Police Department to find information about his family. His parents and brother were Polish Jews who lived in the Terenozek district of the Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic (KazSSR) after feeling into the Soviet Union from Poland to escape the Nazis. In 1943, during Stalinist repressions that were particularly acute for war refugees who had come from abroad, his father was arrested.

“In 2022, I found out that my parents lived in Kazakhstan during the Great Patriotic War. They escaped from the Nazis from Poland. We didn’t have any more information, except for the protocol of the court. As a result of our searches, we found documents that had been kept in the archive for almost 80 years. They concerned my parents and my brother  who are buried in aul (village) Number 6,” said Scheingold.

According to the Scheingold, he has now reconstructed the details of his blood relatives’ lives from 1942 to 1946, with members of the Scheingold family traveling to Kyzylorda to visit the burial site of his brother.

According to the Kazakh Ministry of Internal Affairs, more than 30,000 documents have been kept in the archive of the regional police. These documents are very important for thousands of people looking for information about the fate of relatives – as well as for scientists, journalists, and historians – to fully reconstruct and understand historical events using first-hand information.

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Times of Central Asia

Askar Alimzhanov graduated from the journalism department of the Kazakh State University named after S. Kirov, then worked as a correspondent for the daily republican newspaper Leninskaya Smen. He then moved to the United States to be a reporter for the daily newspaper "Cape Cod Times" in Hayanis, Massachusetts, (USA) under the journalist exchange program between the Union of Journalists of the USSR and the New England Society of News Editors. Since then, he has helped build transparency and understanding of Central Asia region in various executive level positions at esteemed media organizations including "Akbar"(Alma-Ata) international center for journalism, the Khabar News agency, the Television and Radio Corporation "Kazakhstan" JSC, and MIR- Kazakhstan.

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