Cologne, Germany – Several survivors of “Kindertransport,” a WWII rescue effort which transported Jewish children between Cologne and London from 1938 to 1939, reunited this week at a commemorative exhibit titled “Children Leave Tue 17 Clock 13 Farewell at School.”
FOCUS.de (http://bit.ly/1bZjDAW) reports that the exhibit contains photographs of the “Kindertransport” movement, which was led by Dr. Erich Klibansky, director of the Cologne Yavneh, the lone Jewish school in the Rhineland.
Dr. Klibansky successfully transported close to 150 Jewish children to England by the end of the 1930s, and those who attended the exhibition remembered him fondly as they viewed photos of themselves leaving their families and homeland.
90 year-old Henrietta Franks, who still lives in England, remembered Dr. Klibansky as she viewed a photo of a train filled with children leaving Cologne, saying, “Dr. Klibansky is riding with each train, but he always had to leave his family.”
Franks said she was 15 when she left Cologne, and that “My sister was 12, crying for a whole year.”
Franks said her parents managed to flee to Belgium and then to southern France, but her father was picked up by the Nazis, telling her mother, “I’ll see you in England.”
Franks said that was the last her family ever heard from her father.
Another survivor, Ernest Kolman, who has lived in England for 75 years, was asked while viewing the photos if he was frightened upon finding himself alone in England at the age of 12.
Kolman answered, “I was scared when I was in Germany, where my mother and I were forced to hide in a closet. But when I was first across the Dutch border, the fear was gone. And since then I have never been afraid.”
Viewing a photo of Dr. Klibansky and children waving goodbye to parents and other children who could not secure exit permits, Kolman said that up until now he could not remember the exact moment he bid his parents good-bye.
Kolman said he “remembers now,” and that “the farewell is final.”