Obituary: Bella Solnik

Obituary: Bella Solnik

Bella Urbach Solnik passed away peacefully Saturday, Nov. 26, 2016, long past what the odds would have predicted.

Born in Zdunska Wola, Poland, Bella was the second of seven children born to Abram and Golda Taube Urbach. Unfortunately, she was the only one of her immediate family, and one of only two of a very large extended family, who survived the Nazi Holocaust. Separated from her family, Bella, on her own, escaped Dachau on a death march in March 1945 after six years under Nazi control in ghettos, labor camps and numerous concentration camps. After being harbored for six weeks by a Bavarian farmer and his wife, she met her husband-to-be in April 1945 in a displaced persons camp, where she was taken once her host family learned she was Jewish. Pinkus Solnik had come to the camp in Bad Worishofen, Germany, for nutritional rehabilitation after his liberation from Dachau by American soldiers, but he was healthy enough to know at first sight that Bella would be his life partner. Bella and Pinkus were married nine months later and waited four years in Germany for legal immigration as displaced persons.

They arrived in Atlanta in October 1949 with their firstborn, Goldie, sponsored by the local Jewish community. Two more daughters, Betty and Rosalie, were born to them within the next decade. Bella and Pinkus led successful, full and active lives in America, enjoying friends, travel, theater and dining, but they always grieved the loss of family in the war. Bella spoke to schools and churches, telling of her story of survival and receiving beautiful letters and notes from the schoolchildren she touched. Bella was honored in 2010 by the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum as one of six candle lighters in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda during the national Days of Remembrance.

Bella is now reunited with Pinkus, who died in 2001, in dance and in love. She is survived by her daughters and sons-in-law, Goldie and Lou Bertone, Betty and Alan Sunshine, and Rosalie and Mark Wolfe; grandchildren Darren Traub (Amy), Shaun Traub (Cara), Jeremy Wolfe (Grace), Justin Sunshine (Jennifer Famery), Reid Wolfe (Jaime), Marshall Sunshine and Garity Wolfe; and great-grandchildren Brady, Hudson and Madison Traub and Angelica and Grayson Wolfe.

Sign the online guestbook at Graveside services will be held at 4 p.m. Monday, Nov. 28, at Arlington Memorial Park with Rabbi Neil Sandler officiating. Donations can be made to the William Breman Jewish Heritage Museum or Ahavath Achim Synagogue. Arrangements by Dressler’s Jewish Funeral Care, 770-451-4999.

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