Max was the brother of my father's mother, Selma Adler (nee Moch). She and the other siblings managed to leave Germany for the US before the war. She passed away before I was born (in fact, I am named for her), but I don't remember anyone in the family ever mentioning Max. I think his loss was too devastating for the family (ie: knowing they had survived when he did not), and so like many survivors, they did not speak of it.

Only years later, when I began to do genealogical research, did I come across Max's story. I asked my father about him then, and he told me that he was a businessman who was unmarried. My father didn't know why Max had not left Germany like the rest of the family. Perhaps he thought that as a single man (as opposed to his siblings, who were married and had children), it would be easier for him to "ride out" the war. Tragically, of course, this was not the case. I will share one more item. My great-grandmother (my father's father's mother), Sara Adler, lived in Bad Rappenau. From there, she was also sent to Gurs, where she died. I have wondered if Max and she knew one another or saw each other there. Who knows?

Your work teaching the history of that terrible period through the stories of families who lived in your area is so very important. I congratulate you for doing so. Please share with the students how important I believe their work is, and how I appreciate their remembering my great-uncle Max Moch.

Sheryl Adler Abbey
October 2021