MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Ruth and Siegmund Spiegel were married 70 years ago, on April 13, 1945. The two left Nazi Germany during the Holocaust and later met in New York City.READ MORE: How's This For A Photobomb? Palm Bay Cop Takes Selfie With Gator Stuck In Storm Drain
CBS4’s Rhiannon Ally sat down with them in their Bal Harbour Home to reflect on family they lost and the love they found in each other.
Ruth Spiegel summed it up their love story perfectly.
“It goes by so fast. It’s amazing.”
Reminiscing about their wedding day, brings smiles to their faces.
“I picked up the tab. $35 and some change. It was a lot of money at that time. $35,” said Siegmund.
But to understand the magnitude of their love story, you have to hear their history.
Everywhere you look, pieces of their past are evident in their home. Passports from Germany, where they were both born, show the mark of a country which no longer welcomed Jews. Hitler came to power in 1933.
Spiegel was the only Jewish student in his school and couldn’t understand at 14 years old the hate that was spreading. He recalled a call his father received from the school, saying he couldn’t return.
“I want my school to be free of Jews,” he recalled the school official saying.
His hard-working parents soon lost their business. Friends became anything but.READ MORE: CDC Advisers Recommend Who Can Get Booster Shots Of Pfizer's COVID-19 Vaccine
“I became an outcast. Some of the people I associated with, studied with, pushed me off sidewalk or spit on me,” said Siegmund.
Ruth was only 12 in 1933, living in Hamburg.
“I was called a damn Jew,” she said.
In 1938, just months apart, both Ruth and Siegmund left Nazi Germany. Their parents helped them leave, but weren’t allowed to leave with them. Neither ever saw their parents again, learning years later they were killed, as millions of other Jews were during World War II.
But, Ruth and Siegmund found each other in New York, shortly before Siegmund went to the War in 1941, volunteering to fight for the U.S. Four years later, Siegmund came home to New York, they married just one week later.
Ruth and Siegmund created a beautiful life together, raising two daughters, Sandi and Deborah. Dedicating their lives to them, and each other. That’s been their secret to 70 beautiful years.
“Nothing is easy. Especially when the children are young and have differences,” said Ruth.
Also, Siegmund has spent years lecturing about the Holocaust and their experiences in Nazi Germany. He even wrote a book, “D-Day Plus Seventy Year: A Wartime Odyssey”.
They’re candid about everything they went through. Ruth even admitting she underwent plastic surgery on her nose to try to fit in.
“Because I thought I looked very Jewish, which was a terrible thing to look like this in Germany during Hitler.”
Despite everything, they’ve never lived in the past, remembering it, yes. Their daughters and a grandson, Brandon, are now grown. Their family is what they are the most proud of after 70 years together.
“What do you feel when you see that young couple?” Rhiannon Ally asked them. “How old we got! Not really. What the hell happened in the meantime. Where did the years go?” They both laughed.MORE NEWS: Former FDA Commissioner: Delta Variant May Be Last Major Wave Of Infection
They held a low-key dinner with their family over the weekend to celebrate 70 years.