His family being religious, Mordehai studied in a Heder and a Yeshiva. Prior to his membership in “Hashomer Hatzair”, he was a member of “Mizrahi”. He studied printing in Bratislava. In 1942, at the time of the first deportations from Slovakia, he helped dozens of his comrades in the movement and other Jews to cross the border to Hungary. In April 1942, while attempting to travel to Budapest, he was arrested by the police in Komárom. He was interrogated about his activities and tortured but did not give away any information. The police took his father as a hostage and together they were transferred to the Garany detention camp where he stayed for three months. While his father remained in the camp, Mordehai was taken back to Komárom for forced labor. He was then transferred to Budapest where he worked as a porter along the banks of
the Danube. He had contact with the Zionist underground movement. Thanks to forged documents he managed to escape to Romania by means of the tiyul. Mordehai arrived in Eretz Israel (Palestine) in 1944 and worked as a printer.