Shalom Life | July 01, 2014

Oldest Holocaust Survivor Dead at 108

Antoni Dobrowolski defied Nazis, continued teaching Polish children

By: Leonard Carl

Published: October 22nd, 2012 in News » World

The world’s oldest known survivor of the Auschwitz concentration camp — a teacher who defied his Nazi occupiers – has died at the age of 108.

According to a spokesman at the Auschwitz-Birkenau state museum, Antoni Dobrowolski died on October 21st in Debno, Poland.

After invading Poland in 1939, the Germans – who considered Poles inferior – tried to stop Polish culture and education by banning anything more than four years of elementary school. Defiantly, Dobrowolski was one of the leaders of an underground effort of Polish Jews to continue teaching lessons to Polish children.

In 1942, Dobrowolski was discovered and promptly arrested by the Gestapo and sent to Auschwitz where he remained until the end of the war in 1945.

More than one million people – mostly Jews, and many non-Jewish Poles – were killed by the Germans at Auschwitz-Birkenau.

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