Abish, Yona: A Family Tale

Abish, Yona: A Family Tale

From Europe to Israel and Australia

by Yona Abish

Yona Abish has divided her family′s history into three parts, beginning with her husband′s childhood in Romania. Buniu′s early childhood was a rural idyll and he was enrolled to study chemical engineering at a prestigious university when anti-Semitism changed the course of his life. In 1933 Buniu and his father arrived in Palestine and returned to manufacturing soap. In 1934 Buniu joined the Haganah.

In the second part Yona describes her early life in Yekaterinoslav on the Dnieper River in what is now Ukraine. Driven by anti-Semitism, she and her mother fled to Lithuania in 1924 and soon after also arrived in Palestine. Other members of the family joined them. As Yona writes, ′Our whole life revolved around Zionism and patriotism.′

Yona and Buniu′s life together is the focus of the third part. They met in Tel Aviv in 1940, married in 1941 and migrated to Australia in 1956 with their two daughters. It was hard to leave Israel but they built a wonderful family life in Melbourne. This is a very warm family story, full of love for nature and animals and offering much wise and gentle advice.