After Aunt Emma placed the photo of the “M” family in the newspaper she had a surprising number of calls. Several people called to say they had worked with the youngest son Otto who use to live in Edmonton! We couldn’t believe it, but where was he now? My aunt followed several leads and made many phone calls to people who knew of him or had worked with him, but no one knew where he was. She gave me regular updates, as I was just as keen to find a member of the family. After many weeks on the phone Aunt Emma called a number in Oregon and a the man who answered was Otto!
She called me right after talking to him. Aunt Emma was so excited she was laughing and crying at the same time. Imagine finding each other after 65 years and realizing that they both immigrated to North America! Even more incredible that they both lived in the same city for several years and didn’t know it. I was amazed by it all.
Otto told my aunt that the photo showed the last happy time his family was together with their father. He wept when he saw the picture. Otto told Aunt Emma that shortly after the picture was taken they returned to Germany and his father was drafted into the SS and he was never heard from again. The photo meant so much to Otto that Aunt Emma could feel his happiness radiating like sunshine.
Aunt Emma and Otto phone each other regularly now, as they have 65 years to catch up on and on a global scale they are neighbours once more.