Zvi Ernst Spiegel was born in Budapest in 1915. In 1943 the entire Spiegel family was herded into a Jewish Ghetto and later deported to Auschwitz. Zvi Spiegel and his twin-sister Magda were selected from the arriving group to be part of Mengele's medical experiments. His mother and Magda's little seven-year-old boy were sent to the gas chambers immediately and murdered.
Zvi Spiegel was 29 when he arrived and was made block chief and called Zwillingsvater, or 'twins father'. He had the job of supervising the twins and tried his best to protect the boys and to calm them by teaching them geography, history and math. The girls had no such leader to unite and protect them. The twins clung to him as their father figure. He later recalled how he tried to comfort them when they came over to him, very frightened, and started crying.
Peter and Thomas Somogyi, both twin survivors, never forgot how Zvi Spiegel risked his life to protect the twins. Once he saved two children by making them twins - he simply falsified the papers and then told Mengele they were twins - which they weren’t.
Zvi Spiegel and his sister survived Auschwitz, but Zvi suffered all his life from deterioration of his spine, caused by Mengele's injections.
Zvi, the beloved Zwillingsvater, died in February, 1993.