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MS St. Louis

We sent a telegram to Roosevelt saying 'Build a camp & let us in or at least the children.' Without success. Eventually we were running out of food, water, fuel. The captain had to make the decision to go back towards Germany. In the harbour of Havana a man rushed towards me with blood dripping from his wrists & jumped into the water. A crew member jumped after & pulled him out. Those people who had been let out of concentration camps because they could show that they could leave the country had to sign a form to say that they would never return to Germany. He had signed this form & just couldn’t take it, so he tried to commit suicide. They took him to hospital in Havana, where he tried to smash his head into a mirror but he didn’t succeed. But when we were eventually cruising back towards Germany, because we’d run out of everything & we had patrols going through all the cabins & gangways to make sure nobody else attempted suicide, because of course the thought of going back to Germany was an awful thing.

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