“the spirit returns to God who gave it.”
Of Ferenc Göndör – Remembrance of a righteous one brings blessing (Proverbs 10:7)
It’s a great loss. Several obituaries have been written in Svenska Dagbladet and Dagens Nyheter
Mr. Ferenc Göndör is gone. His immediate family, his son Eli and his daughter Eva in Jerusalem mourn and so do all of us of his little family at Adat Israel – and beyond. Tall, thin but sprightly, since the mid 90s when I lived within walking distance of the synagogue, he – especially he would always welcome me with a smile and a “you are welcome” and “good to see you” on Sabbath mornings – he and his dearly departed friend, the late Mr. Mikael Elias.
Mr. Göndör is a witness that belongs to a generation of survivors that is slowly passing away with the years, the Auschwitz generation of which a few survivors still remain to be giving living testimony of what happened – to confront the Holocaust deniers and their unfeeling propaganda, face to face.
He wrote “A-6171 – A Jewish odyssey” Perhaps better translated as “A Jewish Destiny”?
For his writings and his other very important work of weekly visits to schools and giving lectures about the Holocaust there – all in the spirit of combating anti-Semitism, he received the Tage Danielsson Prize and some ten years later the 8th grade of the Illis Quorum Medal on Holocaust Remembrance Day in January of 2005
Just as Raoul Wallenberg is associated with Hungary and saving Hungarian Jews from being Holocausted, so too as fate would have it – a Hungarian Jew by the name of Ferenc Göndör lost all his family in concentration camps but he himself survived and escaped from a terminal fate in the Auschwitz concentration camp in which he was incarcerated/interned – to a more fruitful life in freedom in Wallenberg’s Sweden where he started a family.
We all miss him, now.