Thursday, November 12, 2020

A Personal Hero Of Mine

Sir Nicholas Winton was a British humanitarian who actively worked to save as many children as he possibly could as World War II began to break out in Europe. He supervised the saving of 669 children, most of whom were Jewish, from Czechoslovakia shortly before the war started. Winton started this effort in 1938 when he created an organization with the mission of aiding Jewish children at risk from the Nazis. 

He set up an office at the table in his hotel room, and through some bureaucratic meddling, he gained permission to allow any refugees under the age of 17 legal entry into Britain, provided they had a place to stay and £50 meant for their return trip to their home country.His efforts included writing politicians, asking if they would take any refugees. Sweden was the only other nation besides Britain to take any of the children. 

He managed to save 669 children, though he believed he could have saved more had the United States and other countries taken in some of the refugees. He went unrecognized for his efforts for 50 years, but in 1988, he was invited to the BBC program That’s Life! He was reunited with several of the children he saved, all of whom were adults. He was dubbed the “British Schindler” by the press. In 2003, he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II for “services to humanity, in saving Jewish children from Nazi Germany occupied Czechoslovakia.”

You can read about more heroes of the Holocaust by going HERE.

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