Holocaust survivors who fought to “correct their mistakes” in Nazi Germany died at the age of 92


As the only Holocaust survivor in his family, David Marrstein felt responsible for educating and defending those suffering from Nazi Germany’s atrocities.

In 2019, he was in front of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, where survivors and their heirs used US courts to benefit from unpaid life insurance policies from European companies such as Allianz, Axa, and Generali I testified that I support the law that allows me to recover. To their parents and grandparents.

“We all endured the ultimate hell,” Marmelstein testified. “We have lost everything — our rights, our property, our loved ones.”

Marmelstein, president of the Holocaust Survivors in Miami-Dade County, died on Tuesday. He was 92 years old.

“David was a rare combination of intelligence, empathy, warmth, and goodness,” said Samdabin, a longtime friend and lawyer at the Holocaust Survivors Foundation USA. “He was always smiling and very strict about defending the rights of survivors, but everyone loved him. He smiled and insisted.”

Born December 21, 1928 in Kebjazzd, Czechoslovakia, Melmelstein was only 16 years old when sent to Auschwitz concentration camp.

His parents, four brothers, sisters and grandparents were all murdered. In 1948, Marmelstein left Europe for New York, where he met his wife, Irene, who was also a survivor.

The couple went on their honeymoon in Miami and decided not to leave.

After settling in Miami, the newlyweds joined the other survivors and established the New American Jewish Club.

“We started the group because it was very difficult for early survivors to build and interact with other people who didn’t survive what we did.” 1997.

Marmelstein has started a dry cleaning business. He and his wife had three children.

Despite all he experienced, Marmelstein was resilient and was able to “do whatever he had to do” to create a life for him and his family, Michael said.・ Marmelstein said.

“I was always surprised at how they were able to lead a new life,” he said of his parents.

He added that his father has the ability to adapt to any situation, ask questions, and learn how to assimilate.

“He heard some men talking about the stock market, so he learned to invest,” said Michael Marmelstein. “He was very successful for a man who didn’t even speak English when he got here.”

Defending Marmelstein

After losing his family on the Holocaust, he His father said he felt obliged to share his story with the younger generation. He visited schools, the Holocaust Remembrance Center in Miami Beach, and elsewhere to share a survival story.

“He went wherever they had him,” he said of his dad. “He believed that everyone needed to know what had happened, so it would never happen again.”

The father also devoted his life to helping the survivors.

In 2001, David Marrstein joined other Hungarian Jews in a lawsuit over the loss of valuables seized from the Nazi gold train at the end of World War II.

The proceedings alleged that the Nazis and their Hungarian collaborators stole paintings, jewelry, stamps, coins and other valuables from the Jews and sent them to Germany by train, Miami Herald reported at the time. At the end of the war, the trains were confiscated — but the items were never returned to their legitimate owners.

The proceedings were intended to hold the United States accountable, which became owned by the United States after the liberation of Europe.

“We love this country more than Americans,” said Holocaust survivor Marmelstein at the time. “But our government didn’t do the right thing.”

Five years later, the US government agreed to pay $ 25 million in humanitarian aid to Hungarian Jews instead of individual payments.

Marmelstein also worked for years to help survivors regain life insurance payments from major European companies, but they ran into legal barriers in U.S. courts and parliament and sought damages. Denied the ability. Mr Davin said Marmelstein is a tireless supporter of the rights of survivors.

His son, Mike Marmelstein, said his dad just “wants to correct his mistakes.”

Home-owned man

He tried to instill those values ​​in his family.

David Marrstein worked hard, but he always went home for dinner. The family always gathered together for a meal at the table at 7pm.

“People often ask us how to overcome the pain and fear they endured on the Holocaust, lose the whole family, lead a normal life, and grow a happy and well-coordinated family,” Marmelstein said in 1997. Said in the letter of the year.

“I can only say that it wasn’t easy. But Irene and I are the best way to honor the murdered loved ones and all the 6 million Jews killed by Hitler. I felt that it was about raising Jewish children to the fullest of our abilities. Educated and contributed to the community, and most importantly, about what we experienced. It all really happened to tell the truth to the world. “

In addition to Irene and his son Michael, Marmelstein is by his daughters Helen Davis and Devi Marmelstein, grandchildren Jenna Fox, Lindsay Davis and Bryan Davis, and his great-grandson Eli Fox. I’m alive.

Instead of flowers, the family wants his memorable donations to be made to the Israeli Defense Fund.

The service will take place Thursday at 2:00 pm at Mount Nevo Kendal’s Riverside Gordon Memorial Chapel, 5900 SW 77th Ave. You need a mask and social distance. The service is also displayed in Zoom: Conference ID: 968 3734 4322; Passcode: 905510.

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