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NICHOLAS … you are a Gem!

July 1, 2015


LONDON (AP) — He was just a 29-year-old clerk at the London Stock Exchange when he faced the challenge of his lifetime. Traveling with a friend to Czechoslovakia in 1938, as the drums of impending war echoed around Europe, Nicholas Winton was hit by a key realization.

The country was in danger and no one was saving its Jewish children.

Winton would almost single-handedly save more than 650 Jewish children from the Holocaust, earning himself the label “Britain’s Schindler.” He died Wednesday at age 106 in a hospital near Maidenhead, his hometown west of London, his family said.

Winton arranged trains to carry children from Nazi-occupied Prague to Britain, battling bureaucracy at both ends and saving them from almost certain death. To top it all off, he then kept quiet about his exploits for a half-century.

His daughter, Barbara, said she hoped her father would be remembered for his wicked sense of humor and charity work as well as his wartime heroism. And she hoped his legacy would be inspiring people to believe that even difficult things were possible.

“He believed that if there was something that needed to be done you should do it,” she said. “Let’s not spend too long agonizing about stuff. Let’s get it done.”

British Prime Minister David Cameron said “the world has lost a great man.” Jonathan Sacks, Britain’s former chief rabbi, said Winton “was a giant of moral courage and determination, and he will be mourned by Jewish people around the world.”

Born in London on May 19, 1909 to parents of German Jewish descent, Winton himself was raised as a Christian.

Late in 1938, a friend contacted him and told him to cancel the skiing holiday they had planned and travel instead to Czechoslovakia.

Alarmed by the influx of refugees from the Sudetenland region recently annexed by Germany, Winton and his friend feared — correctly — that Czechoslovakia soon would be invaded by the Nazis and that its Jewish residents would be sent to concentration camps.

While some in Britain were working to get Jewish intellectuals and communists out of Czechoslovakia, no one was trying to save the children — so Winton took that task upon himself.

Returning to Britain, Winton persuaded British officials to accept children, as long as foster homes were found and a 50-pound guarantee was paid for each one to ensure they had enough money to return home later. At the time, their stays were only expected to be temporary.

Setting himself up as the one-man children’s section of the British Committee for Refugees from Czechoslovakia, Winton set about finding homes and guarantors, drawing up lists of about 6,000 children, publishing pictures to encourage British families to agree to take them.
The first 20 children arrived by plane, but once the German army reached Prague in March 1939, they could only be brought out by train.

So, in the months before the outbreak of World War II, eight trains carried children from Czechoslovakia through Germany to Britain. In all, Winton got 669 children out.

The largest evacuation was scheduled for Sept. 3, 1939 — the day that Britain declared war on Germany. That train never left, and almost none of the 250 children trying to flee on it survived the war.

The children from Prague were among some 10,000 mostly Jewish children who made it to Britain on what were known as the Kindertransports (children’s transports). Few of them would see their parents again.

Although many more Jewish children were saved from Berlin and Vienna, those operations were better organized and better financed. Winton’s operation was unique because he worked almost alone.

“Maybe a lot more could have been done. But much more time would have been needed, much more help would have been needed from other countries, much more money would have been needed, much more organization,” Winton later said.

He also acknowledged that not all the children who made it to Britain were well-treated in their foster homes — sometimes they were used as cheap domestic servants.

“I wouldn’t claim that it was 100 percent successful. But I would claim that everybody who came over was alive at the end of the war,” he was quoted as saying in the book about the Kindertransports “Into the Arms of Strangers.”

Several of the children he saved grew up to have prominent careers, including filmmaker Karel Reisz, British politician Alf Dubs and Canadian journalist Joe Schlesinger.

Winton served in the Royal Air Force during the war and continued to support refugee organizations. After the war, he became involved in numerous other charitable organizations, especially in Maidenhead.

A keen fencer who lost his chance to compete at the Olympics because of the outbreak of World War II, Winton worked with his younger brother Bobby to found the Winton Cup, still a major team fencing competition in Britain.

But for almost 50 years, Winton said nothing about what he had done before the war. It only emerged in 1988 when his wife Grete found documents in the attic of their home.

“There are all kinds of things you don’t talk about, even with your family,” Winton said in 1999. “Everything that happened before the war actually didn’t feel important in the light of the war itself.”

Winton’s wife persuaded him to have his story documented. It became well-known in Britain after the BBC tracked down dozens of “Nicky’s Children” and arranged an emotional reunion on prime-time television.

A film about his heroism, “Nicholas Winton — The Power of Good,” won an International Emmy Award in 2002. Then-Prime Minister Tony Blair praised him as “Britain’s Schindler,” after German businessman Oskar Schindler, who also saved Jewish lives during the war.

Winton was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2003 and also honored in the Czech Republic, where last year he received the country’s highest state honor, the Order of the White Lion.

“He was a person I admired for his personal bravery,” said Czech President Milos Zeman.

A statue of Winton stands at Prague’s central station, while a statue commemorating the children of the Kindertransport is a popular sight at London’s Liverpool Street Station.

Winton continued to attend Kindertransport events in Britain and the Czech Republic well beyond his 100th birthday.

Still, he rejected the description of himself as a hero, insisting that unlike Schindler, his life had never been in danger.

“At the time, everybody said, ‘Isn’t it wonderful what you’ve done for the Jews? You saved all these Jewish people,'” Winton said. “When it was first said to me, it came almost as a revelation. Because I didn’t do it particularly for that reason. I was there to save children.”

Winton’s wife Grete died in 1999. He is survived by his daughter Barbara, his son Nick and several grandchildren.




Peace and Love!

  1. opheliart permalink

    it is very important to go the extra distance and find out where and how this teenager got ebola

  2. opheliart permalink


    • opheliart permalink



      • opheliart permalink

        which piggy cults are hogging all the money? money that should be going toward these poor children—toward better and safer homes and more thorough RESEARCH AND INVESTIGATING.

      • opheliart permalink

        and these had JOBS in the health and welfare of others … frightening, and no one knew anything about these ‘caregivers’—the horrors of their thinking
        where did they learn such terrorism—torture tactics?

  3. opheliart permalink

    Comment from rns:

    Larry Jul 1, 2015 at 8:15 pm
    A little division is not a bad thing. We should be more worried about acting in unity. Usually that means people are not thinking hard enough or too scared to show a little bit of critical thinking. If you want national agreement, you are better served in a dictatorship. A democratic nation thrives on disunity. Of letting voices be heard and arguments made. Being forced by the system to justify laws with rational and secular purposes.

    The whiners will continue to whine. But there is no reason to take their tantrums seriously. Time is not on their side, just as it was not on the side of those who supported other forms of discrimination under color of law.

    In 20 years the religious bigots will go through a revisionist phase and try to take credit for the efforts by affirming churches. Just like they try to do with the civil rights movement. Lying comes easy to those who think God excuses any bad behavior on their part.


    This is where man is … and why we have for a while now addressed the topic of “catholicism” … understood as UNIVERSALISM—this system of belief. When Rome and those in agreement with its system decided on the catholic view … they were thinking they would CONQUER all others—all other voice—and convert, force, demand … put into law … a SYSTEM OF BELIEF (thought) that demanded OBEDIENCE to THEIR VIEW: a PLACE OF UNDERSTANDING. This is THE CHURCH—THE CATHOLIC MINDSET we have been addressing—calling out—essaying and commenting about. But… you see, as one in gnosis, we are not of catholic mindset because we are not of this understanding, this PARTIAL PLACE of view. It does not value the view of others, as it demands obedience to its limited understanding of many things … of God (Spirit) especially!

    If not of the world, striving for UNITY with SPIRIT is our voice—a TRUTH calling one out of depraved mind… Rome is Caesar—has been since the inception of the Roman Catholic Church. The Writings speak on these things all throughout, but man in his catholic mind does not see this.

    • opheliart permalink

      we ask … who do you obey? government is full of hypocrites and corruption—everyday we read about this … religion (a system of belief), like government, is like its brother … setting up laws that people are to obey. some are important and needed for safety and protection … some are burdensome like rome’s class systems …

      rendering unto caesar is doing what is necessary for the safer, better place of many (in the world) … even if its a lot of taxes where it feels like you are paying for someone’s else mistakes …

      • opheliart permalink

        JEW AND GENTILE of the Writings is not what those of Judaism and much of Christianity believe. The Writings were voicing something other—highly PROPHETIC. Man does not understand the Language, but did use it to grow and gain access … but also to build his systems to enslave.

        Evidence will come to show the credentials—and shed light on the truth about the Writings … and what man did with these to secure his place.

  4. opheliart permalink

    Was discussing labels with someone this morning. She, a Feminist, but not militant, believes if woman is to have EQUAL voice as men, IS Feminist. This is how her mind works. To me, it is a label, unnecessary for me as I experience not just man/woman … When moving out of ‘universalist’ mindset … labels are seen as stumbling blocks. I mentioned that I am gnostic, but not of Gnosticism, and she said, “but isn’t that where the word gnostic came from?” No … because I am not of a RELIGION—not adhering to its DOCTRINE … she could not understand this … not realizing that “something” came before the religion of Gnosticism, and this is called GNOSIS. I said, consider it a small “g” in gnostic then, but no, being gnostic does not mean you belong to Gnosticism. Some calling themselves Christian do not adhere to ALL mandates of Christianity. The label “Christian” came before the Religion called Christianity. People charge ahead with their ideology, like the church of rome, and blast their way into the conscience of man—raping and undermining …

    What are the schools teaching the kids that they struggle in a “catholic” mindset that cannot see that in the beginning was “the word” … ? and yes, our school system is set up like a class system—the grading system of heaven and hell … and when more people FINALLY REALIZE HOW THIS IS HURTING THE YOUTH … things will change.

    • opheliart permalink

      my daughter sent me an illustration of ARTIST verses NORMAL PEOPLE. The Artist was pointing to a color out of a very long list of colors. Carnation was the color. The Normal ‘People’ was pointing to the color Purple out of a very short list of colors.

      I said, well, I have told people that I am alien 😀

      but you see, many many ARTISTS (or those not catholic) suffer under the universal grading system of rome.

      • opheliart permalink

        how often do people celebrate a game with a lesser score in the colosseums? based solely on performance as a team … GROWTH—IMPROVEMENT—GENEROUS OUTPUT AND LOVE OF GAME—HELPING NEIGHBOR NOT FOR INSTITUTION BUT TO IMPROVE HUMANITY … look at the heros—$$$ … loyalty to agenda … man loves his game—yes?

  5. opheliart permalink

    Dylann Roof … dropped out of school … what was it—9th grade? all the facts are not out on this situation … and it may be that the world won’t get to hear the truth about what he was going through while in school, but only what happened once he was out of school

    school … a slave camp … or a place of developing AWARENESS?

    • opheliart permalink

      think of the BURDENS placed on so many … and these struggled under this weight—OFTEN LABELED MENTALLY ILL, or special needs … and it stuck on them like moronic. How cruel that man thinks himself knowledgable to the point of disabling others!

  6. opheliart permalink

    like we said … maybe the elementary school teachers should stay away from romance novels and stick to generalized ‘how to get along without labels’ …

    maybe they can introduce nicholas winton into the curriculum … now there’s an idea

    • opheliart permalink

      we see so many children growing up as whiners … with the idea that society owes them something

      of course there are many struggling under the weight of a culture that whines “look at me”

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