Borgerhout Memorial

Marinisstraat 7, Borgerhout - Memorial at the house for Mala Zimetbaum.

Historical Information (Source: Wikipedia)

Mala Zimetbaum (Brzesko, 26 January 1918 - Auschwitz, 15 September 1944) was an Antwerp Jew of Polish origin. She was arrested in July 1942 and deported to Auschwitz-Birkenau in September that year.  Especially during her imprisonment she stood out as a particularly heroic woman, where she could help fellow prisoners and saved many from a corridor to the gas chambers. In June 1944 she escaped from Auschwitz, together with the Polish political prisoner Edek Galiński.


Edward Galiński (1923 - 1944), nicknamed Edek and of Jewish origin, was born on May 10, 1923 in Wieckowice, Poland. He worked for the Polish army and fought against the Nazis. He was arrested and deported with 728 other political prisoners to Auschwitz on 14 June 1940.


They were picked up again after a few weeks. In spite of torture, the executioners did not know the names of prisoners who had helped in the escape. Edek and Mala were to be executed but Galiński knew to commit suicide before the execution. To set an example, hoping to reduce the increasing number of flight attempts, the entire camp had to take office. Many prisoners were thus made a witness of Mala's end on 15 September 1944. She left a great impression on many prisoners who, because these events took place rather late in the war, have often survived. Hence the large number of testimonies about Mala's actions.


Various films and books about her were released after the war.