The Story of Sam Arditti
Sam Arditti was born in 1922. During the school year 1941 – 1942 he graduated from the Astiko Gimnasio in Thessaloniki. He lived with his parents Iosef and Dudun in Pavlou Mela 30 street. He had an older brother named Iakov born in 1918. They were not the only Jewish family who lived on this street. According to school archives, 14 Jewish families lived there.
On July 11,1942 the German authorities commanded all Jewish males between the ages of 18 and 45 to gather at Liberty Square. At the time Sam was 20 years old and was among the men who were tortured and humiliated that day. Later in July he was sent for forced labor.
Sam was on the last train to leave Thessaloniki on August 10, 1943, along the remaining 1.800 Jewish men that had survived forced labor. When they arrived in Auschwitz eight days later only 271 men were considered capable of work. Sam was one of them; the number on his arm was 136923. He was later deported in Warsaw. He was liberated on January 1945.
He and his brother returned to Thessaloniki on November 4,1945. Two days later they were both registered at the Jewish Community of Thessaloniki. Soon afterwards, they both immigrated and lived in Israel for the rest of their lives.