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The Scribblings of Behind the Aegis
Posted by Behind the Aegis in Latest Breaking News
Tue Jan 19th 2010, 05:15 AM
Source: Ha'aretz

No matter what, nobody enters the attic." This was the unbreakable rule that defined the childhood of 75-year-old Albert Johan Reeders from Amersfoort, Holland. On Wednesday, his parents will posthumously be awarded Yad Vashem's highest honor, for harboring two Jews whom they hadn't previously known for three years during the Holocaust.

Israel's national Holocaust museum decided to name André Reeders and Aaltje Reeders-Wittermans as Righteous among the Nations for taking Sally and Claire Gimnicher-Hirsch - a married couple - into their home near Amsterdam in 1942, at the request of the Dutch resistance movement.

Unlike most cases involving Dutch households taking in persecuted Jewish families, the two families had had no prior knowledge of each other. Yad Vashem's inquiry into the case showed that their cohabitation through strife, occupation and want led to an unusual friendship which lasted long after the war.

"My parents had about two hours to decide whether to take in this couple," said Abert Reeders. He will accept the award for his parents, who died more than twenty years ago.

The Reeders had five children. If caught harboring the Gimnichers, the entire family might have met a curt execution by German soldiers. The parents told their children never to let anyone from outside the family into the attic, where the Gimnichers were living.


Read more: http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/114364...
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