In Memoriam: Jürgen Löwenstein


The sad news has reached us from Israel that Jürgen Löwenstein has died at the age of 93.

In Memoriam: Jürgen Löwenstein
(photo credits: Mauthausen Memorial)

Jürgen Löwenstein was born on 28 March 1925 in Berlin as Jürgen Rolf Sochaczewer. He was from a poor background and when, in 1938, a rash prevented him from taking a Kindertransport to England, he saw his last chance for leaving Germany in emigration to Palestine.

In September 1939 he took part in a Hakhshara training programme in preparation for emigration to Palestine. When the Hakhshara was banned by the National Socialists in 1941, Jürgen Löwenstein was sent to the Paderborn work camp. On 3 March 1943, the final 60 young men and 40 young women of the German Youth Aliya, an organisation for saving Jewish children and teenagers, were deported from the camp to Auschwitz. Of this group, only 13 men and one woman survived.

In January 1945, Jürgen Löwenstein was sent on a death march from Auschwitz to the Mauthausen concentration camp. He had to continue on to Vienna and work as a forced labourer at the Saurer Works. In April 1945 he was sent to the Mauthausen main camp, then to Gusen concentration camp, where he was liberated by the US Army.

In 1949 he emigrated to Israel and joined the Kibbutz Dorot in Negev. In 1951 he and his wife Chana, together with other Hungarian Holocaust survivors, founded the Kibbutz Yad Hanna, named after the Hungarian resistance fighter Hanna Senesh.

Jürgen Löwenstein will be sadly missed.