Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Death of a righteous Gentile

From Newsday:

BUDAPEST, Hungary -- Kalman Ferenczfalvi, credited with saving the lives of some 2,000 Jews during the Holocaust, has died at the age of 84.

Ferenczfalvi died April 8 in the eastern Hungarian city of Debrecen after suffering a brain hemorrhage, said Balazs Kiss, a filmmaker who directed a documentary featuring testimony about his lifesaving acts during World War II.

In 1988, Ferenczfalvi was granted the title of "Righteous Among The Nations" by Israel's Yad Vashem Institute, which recognizes non-Jews who risked their lives to save Jews during the Holocaust.

During World War II, Ferenczfalvi worked as an administrator of a labor brigade, which many Jews were forced into during the latter stages of the war.

Disregarding orders, Ferenczfalvi designated the workers to guard the Budapest headquarters of the International Red Cross, thereby protecting the brigade members from deportation and likely death.

He also forged papers for Jews and others being persecuted by the Nazis and their Hungarian allies. The documents, written in Hungarian and German, were accepted as authentic by the Nazis long after similar papers issued by others such as Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg no longer guaranteed safe passage.

HT: Bloggledygook

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