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The Boy On The Wooden Box

World War II

Ainsley Bowden

on 27 October 2014

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Transcript of The Boy On The Wooden Box

The Boy On The Wooden Box
Leon Leyson
Leon Leyson is a Jewish boy who lived in the country with his mom, and his brothers Hershel, Tsliag, and David. He also had a sister named Pesza. Leon's dad lived in the city but he didn't have enough money for the whole family to live with him in the city. Eventually after 5 years of waiting Leon's family had enough money to move to the city with his dad. German soldiers invaded his city and home. Leon's dad moved their family to the Ghetto because they thought it would be more safe there, where less people would try to kill their family. A ghetto means a confined place where the Jewish population was required to live. There the Nazis were forcing jews on trains to relocate them. Hershel and Tsliag had already been forced on a train. David Pesza and Leon's father stayed at their factories over night. Leon and his mom were alone in their apartment so they made a plan between the neighbors. The moms would sweep outside the apartments to look busy while the neighbors and the kids hid in a shed. Leon's mom went to check on the kids and while she was gone the neighbors mom died from a Nazi officer. The Nazis then forced Leon and his mom on a train to go to the concentration camps.
At the camp
He was waken by Germans very early and had a hard labor job in the camp at Plaszow. Fellow Jews who looked out for Leon told him where the Schindler Jews worked. He found his dad and brother David and tried to sneak away as much as possible to see them. His dad said he would ask Schindler to hire him. Then he found his mom because his long hair made him seem like a girl. The Nazis never cared about the Jewish people’s hair. Leon and all the Jews couldn’t do anything about it. His mother made him leave quick for fear he might be caught and killed. Later there was a list of Jews who would have a job in Schindler’s factory and Leon and his mother were on the list. He was with David his brother, his dad and his mom. Schindler wasn't against the Jews he was trying to protect them from being killed. Schindler put them in the factory and the Nazis thought the Jewish workers were being tortured but they really weren't. Leon was the youngest in the factory and had to stand on a wooden box to complete his job. This is why the book is titled The Boy On The Wooden Box. The Jews knew the Germans were losing the war because, they were all fleeing. Schindler’s factory was closing and he sent a list saying which Jewish workers had to be sent back to Plaszow. Leon’s father, David and Leon were on the list. Then Schindler saw him and put them in the group to go to the factory. Pesza was doing well in her factory but Leon's dad asked Schindler if she could be with them and Schindler said yes. Then Schindler said they were free! Schindler left because if he had stayed he would have been killed by the Americans since the Americans would have thought of him as just a Nazi. The gates swung open and they were finally free!

Leon's life after the war
They went back to the town where the trouble all started, Krakow. Leon and his family sadly thought the suffering was over but it truly wasn’t. They were greeted by curious stares and many unpleasant looks. Mobs joined and threw rocks at their windows constantly. But, Leon’s father was able to get his old job back. Their family heard that Hersel and many other family members were murdered in the camps. Pesza and David thought it was better to go to back to Czechoslovakia than to stay in Krakow. A few months later Leon’s parents enlisted the help of a Zionist Organization. This was a group whose goal was to establish a Jewish National State.They hopped on a train and arrived at Salzburg Austria. There a United Nations relief organization assigned them to a displaced persons camp in Wetzlar, Germany. There Leon had a tutor so he could catch up from the years he missed of education. Leon also kept in touch with his family in the U.S. and based on reports he heard, all their family in Poland had been murdered. Later Leon and his family also heard that Pesza and David joined a Zionist group and left Czechoslovakia for Israel. Leon wanted to go, but his parents had decided they would go to the United States as soon as possible. They took the train to Bremerhaven Germany and traveled on a former troopship for nine days across the Atlantic Ocean to Boston Massachusetts. He was nineteen years old and his real life was just beginning. In America he barely spoke of his experiences during the war. For Americans a word like “camp” brought back happy memories that were nothing like what Leon had experienced in the concentration camps. Once he tried to describe being starved in the camps but the neighbor only said they had rationing in the U.S. too. The neighbor had no clue of the difference between what Leon had experienced in the camps, searching through garbage cans to find a potato peel and the neighbor experiencing of only having small quantities of butter and meat in the war. Leon and his family enrolled in English for Foreign Born classes three nights a week at Manual Arts High School. Leon went to many colleges because he was very smart and graduated from Pepperdine University. He started teaching at Huntington Park High School. He fell in love with a teacher at the school and he ended up marrying her and had two kids. His brother and sister also married and had families of their own. When the movie Schindler’s List came out he finally shared his past with others. He did meet Schindler and connected with him deeply. He eventually become famous for his past life and had many interviews. Leon Leyson died on January 12, 2013. He died of T-cell lymphoma but he never lost his kind ways nor his sense of humor.

I loved this book and if I were to give it a rating from 1 to 10 the book would score a 10. I liked the ending because Leon pushed aside his memories of the war and lived a happy and joyful life. I would definitely recommend this book to others because it was a very interesting book.
What is this book about
This book is about a jewish boy named Leon Leyson and his family in the concentration camp.
This prezi tells about the boy from the age of around 8 to his death.
Quiz Time
1. What race is Leon.
2. Before Leon had to go to the ghetto how many siblings did he have?
3. Did Leon ever go to college?
4. What did Leon die from?
By: Ainsley Bowden
Full transcript