My name is Simon Kreindler and I will be coming to the Reunion with my
My father was born in Ocna/Vikno (just north of Cz) in 1910. He spent
the years 1914-18 in Vienna and when WWI ended, his family settled in
Cz. In 1930, he left to join his older brothers in New York but
immigration from Eastern Europe was impossible at the time. In 1934 he
traveled to Barbados (in what was then the British West Indies). My
mother was born in Cz but left when she was a child and grew up in
Guatemala. By an interesting but complicated set of circumstances, my
parents met and married in Barbados and I was born there in 1940.
I attended university in Montreal and met my wife there in 1957. After
finishing medical school, I did my specialty training in the USA and in
1971 moved with my family to Toronto, Canada (where we still live). We
have three children whom we are enormously proud of and five
grandchildren who are the lights of our lives.
About ten years ago, I began to research my family history in earnest.
As many of you will undoubtedly appreciate, when one finally has time
to engage in this activity, it is often too late to ask parents the
questions one wants answers to. Although my father always spoke
positively of Cz, I have no real appreciation of what the city meant to
him or for that matter, to my mother.
In the summer of 2005, I was already considering a trip to Cz to learn
more about my roots when the idea of the Reunion was “born” on the Cz
Listserv. I was immediately “hooked.” To be able to visit Cz in the
company of so many who had deep connections to it was almost too good
to be true. As I said in an e mail back then, for me this would be a
once in a lifetime opportunity. I am sure it will deepen my
understanding of my parent's lives.
Since I speak only English, I am awed by the prospect of being part of
such a multilingual group. At least I know where to turn if I need a
translator! I look forward to meeting all of you in May