Belgium bids farewell to resistance hero who saved Jews
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Source: DPA

Belgium paid its final respects Wednesday to the last survivor of a resistance team that in 1943 rescued over 200 Jews from a train to Auschwitz with no more than a pistol, three pairs of wire cutters, a lantern and a red rag.

Robert Maistriau, who died on Friday aged 87, was 22 when he and two friends hijacked a train deporting over 1,600 Jews from Belgium to the Nazi death camp Auschwitz.

On the night of April 19, 1943, the trio  Maistriau, Youra Livchitz (25) and Jean Franklemon (25) bicycled from their Brussels homes some 40 kilometers to Boortmeerbeek in Flanders.

There they wrapped their lantern in a red rag and laid it on the eastbound railway track as an impromptu stop sign. Lying in the darkness, they watched as the train ground to a halt.

Maistriau then crept out and ran to the train, forcing a carriage door open with his wire cutters.

Read more: http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1025617.html

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