President Obama and the Israeli Embassy will honor four individuals for risking their life to protect jews during World War II, which includes Americans from Indiana and Tennessee. The recognition will take place this Wednesday at the Israeli Embassy in Washington. The event commemorates the arrival of the Red Army to Auschwitz, the largest death camp ever built.
Ron Dermer, Israel’s ambassador to the U.S., said that the president’s participation will be “a worthy tribute to the worthiest among us.”
Americans Roddie Edmonds from Tennessee, Lois Gunden of Goshen from Indiana and Polish citizens Walery and Maryla Zbijewski of Warsaw will be recognized by Yad Vashem for protecting Jews from harm during the dark period. Yad Vashem is the world’s Holocaust education research center, based in Jerusalem.
“Righteous Among the Nations” is the recognition that the Yad Vashem on behalf of Israel and the Jewish people give to non-Jews that protected those in danger during the Holocaust.
Roddie Edmonds was the highest-ranking American non-commissioned officer at the Stalag IX A POW. The heroic act for which is recognized by Israel and president Obama occurred when a Nazi commander pointed a gun at the U.S. POW and demanded Jewish-American Soldiers to identify themselves.
Edmonds told instead to all 1,000 U.S. servicemen to step forward and then declared, “we are all Jews here.” This noble act saved about 200 Jewish lives and the history was just brought to live after his death.
Gunden, a French teacher, established a children’s home in the south to save children, including those children she helped smuggle out of a nearby internment camp. She also protected them when authorities showed up at her house.
The Zbijewskis hid a Jewish child at their home until the girl’s mother could return to look for her, as reported by CBS News.
The United Nations designated January 27th as the International Holocaust Remembrance Day, to remember the six million Jews killed by Nazis and their collaborators during the Holocaust. Is the first time the commemoration is held in the U.S.
Source: CBS News