Christian Author: Nancy W. Boyer

CHILDREN OF THE TRAIN…the ONLY CHANCE

kindertransport7There are many people who are alive today because the people of the United Kingdom took thousands of children into safe care. Most would never see their parents again. The agony of placing one’s little child or teenager on a train headed for an unknown family; trying to look brave; smiling; waving….but knowing that this was their only chance is hard to imagine. kindertransport4

“10,000 thousand, mainly European Jewish children fled to the UK when they were threatened by the Nazis in the run up the Second World War.The youngsters were evacuated between December 1938 and September 1939 as war clouds gathered over Europe and the Nazis began their systematic extermination of the Jews which culminated in the Holocaust.” kindertransport6

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There are two videos that I am sharing today.  Video 1 is the story of the survivors who express the deep emotions that they felt and  at times the inability to admit to  true feelings about their past. Some, who have children and grandchildren of their own today, know why they survived and  are grateful for the kindness of non-Jewish and Jewish families in Great Britain who  took them in. They finally know that they have a  purpose to their lives.

Some  survivors also worry that people of today will forget how hatred and intolerance can lead to another holocaust….a part of history we do not want to repeat. After viewing, with sound, the first video, be certain to see the second one on the children’s memorial in Israel, Yad Vashem.

Video 1:HISTORY  AND THE CHILDREN OF THE TRAIN

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Thousands of other children did not survive.  They did not make it to the transportation or the short window of time that was open to their departure to Great Britain.  These died with their parents in the concentration camps.

A visit to Yad Vashem Children’s Holocaust Memorial in Israel is one of the most moving displays of remembrance.  The thousands of stars on the ceiling represent the names of each child being read aloud.

Video 2: Yad Vashem Children’s Holocaust Memorial 

Along the coast of Harwich, UK, is a  memorial plaque which says in part,  “At 5:30 am on 2 Dec. 1938, the SS Prague docked at Parkeston Quay. On board were 196 children, the first arrival of what would become known as the kindertransport….”    Not only did families meet this particular boat, but the Salvation Army put them in hostels.  A number of the older children were carrying babies.  Keep in mind that they had just traveled across the North Sea and then for some on to London by rail.   This meant for some mothers and fathers that a baby was placed in the arms of a teenage child, who journeyed  on by  train and then boat….to have to turn away forever knowing it was their children’s only chance.  The future for most of these heart-broken souls meant pending arrest…forced labor camps…gas chambers and death.

See pictures of  Dedication of Kindertransport Memorial Plaque in Harwich, UK

2 responses

  1. Lawrence Gingery

    Thanks for sharing this moving video. The stories told here and the history should not be forgotten nor repeated. God bless all the survivors and those who helped them.

    Like

    June 26, 2013 at 19:42

    • Hi Larry, I was just thinking about you the other day. Glad to hear from you. I got an email from Olga. She said Denis is still with Campus Crusade. That is good. Best to you and the family this summer. We are really hot here in FL. Blessings Nancy

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      Like

      June 26, 2013 at 22:45