Johan van Hulst, a Dutch school principal who saved the lives of hundreds of children during the Holocaust, died on March 22, 2018 at the age of 107, according to several news sources.
Van Hulst was the director of a Protestant seminary during the Second World War, which bordered on a day-care center used by the Nazis to hold Jewish children before being sent to concentration camps.
Van Hulst and resistance fighters smuggled hundreds of children from the day care center to the seminary. When it was clear, the children were carried over a hedge to the seminary. The children would stay in the seminary until a resistance activist sneaked them away in a basket on a bicycle to be taken to a family that had agreed to adopt a child.
It is estimated that Van Hulst prevented hundreds of Jewish children from being sent to concentration camps.
Van Hulst was recognized by the Israeli Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum in 1
Van Hulst reported on his experiences with Yad Vashem:
Imagine 80, 90, maybe 70 or 100 children standing there, and you have to decide which children to take with you … That was The most difficult day of my life, "he recalled the time in 1943, when the Jewish Daycare should be vacated.
" You know that you can not possibly take all the children with you. You know that the children you leave behind will die. I took twelve with me. Later, I asked myself: Why not thirteen?
Van Hulst later became a senator and served from 1956 to 1981.
The Dutch ambassador to Israel, Gilles Beschoor Plug, told CNN that van Hulst "will be remembered especially as a hero of Dutch resistance in the world war His death is a great loss, and his courageous actions, which save many Jewish children, remain an inspiration to future generations. "
Today the school houses the National Holocaust Museum of the Netherlands.
We invite you to share condolences to Johan van Hulst in his guestbook.