Eva Galler’s False Identity Papers

Eva Galler jumped from a “death train” on January 8, 1943. She walked back to her hometown and was given momentary shelter by two different women and then took a passenger train to Cracow. After spending three days in the train station, she was caught by German soldiers in a street round-up. They were grabbing Polish young people for labor in Germany. Pretending to be a Polish Catholic girl, Eva quickly invented a new identity. She chose the name of a former classmate, Katharina Czuchowska, and gave herself a different birthday and hometown. The Germans gave her a new identity papers (“Work book for foreigners”) and sent her to work as forced labor on a farm in Austria. She survived the rest of the war “passing” as a Catholic, with (false) documents to allay suspicions. The Germans had tried so hard to kill Eva but accidentally saved her.