In present-day Ukraine, Hershel Greenblat was born with the name Grischa Grinblat in 1941. Prior to World War II, his mother was born in Kremenchug, Ukraine and his father was born in Lublin, Poland. They married in a synagogue shortly after the beginning of World War II, and (Grisha) Greenblat was born a year later. Both of Greenblat’s parents were part of the resistance against the Nazis and later the Russians. The first years of Greenblat’s life were spent hiding in a network of underground caves. While his immediate family survived the Holocaust, most of his extended family did not.