PRIVATE: created 1920, in Walldorf, Germany; passed away April 19, 2002, in Guatemala; immigrated to United States, 1937; United states resident; hitched Gerda Weissmann, 1946. Religion: Jewish.

JOB: Philanthropist. Gerda and Kurt Klein Foundation, creator, 2000. Previously worked being a printer. Armed forces solution: Served in U.S. Army, 1942-45.


(Editor) Gerda Klein, All but My Life, Hill & Wang (nyc, NY), 1957.

(With Gerda Klein) The Hours After: Letters of Love and Longing within the War’s Aftermath, St. Martin’s Press (ny, NY), 2000.

ADAPTATIONS: Memories, Voices, and alternatives: classes discovered through the Holocaust and Global Genocides, a five-part television show, ended up being created by the Massachusetts Corporation for Educational Telecommunications.

SIDELIGHTS: Kurt Klein came to be in 1920 and was raised in Walldorf, Germany. Whenever Chancellor Adolf Hitler stumbled on power within the 1930s that are late Klein’s moms and dads became uneasy about their country’s future. Klein ended up being forced to quit college soon after their club mitzvah because there ended up being therefore much prejudice against Jews, himself english by reading about the United States so he remained home and taught. As he ended up being sixteen, their moms and dads urged kids to leave Germany so they really could remain safe. Klein’s sis immigrated towards the united states of america, Klein accompanied her in 1937, and Klein’s cousin joined up with them in 1938. Klein, whom found its way to the usa with ten bucks in the pocket, worked being a typesetter, dishwasher, and cigar shop clerk, attempting to save yourself money that is enough allow their moms and dads to become listed on them in the us.

Whenever Jewish domiciles and businesses had been assaulted when you look at the Kristallnacht that is infamous in, Klein’s moms and dads’ home had been vandalized. In 1940 their parents had been arrested if you are were and jewish delivered to a detention camp in France. Although Klein along with his siblings attempted to get their parents visas to the usa, they did not have money that is enough pay the expenses, and their efforts had been stifled by bureaucratic guidelines. By the time they got the visas, in 1942, their moms and dads have been deported to Auschwitz concentration camp in Eastern Europe.

For the reason that exact same 12 months, Klein ended up being drafted to provide within the U.S. Army to battle contrary to the nation of their delivery; their capacity to best top 10 dating site in usa talk German permitted him to focus in cleverness. While on patrol, he heard that a team of survivors from the concentration camp was discovered near a warehouse, in which he and other troops decided to go to investigate the problem and liberate the survivors.

One of many prisoners had been a woman that is young Gerda Weissmann. Each of her family members, except an uncle, was indeed killed by the Germans. After 3 years in a concentration camp, she and 2,000 other people was indeed forced to walk 300 kilometers before being abandoned into the booby-trapped warehouse; just 150 of those had lived through the death march.

Klein asked the survivors if anybody talked German or English. Weissmann responded warily, “Our company is Jewish, you understand, ” in accordance with an AP article reprinted on Klein hesitated, then said, “therefore have always been we. ” Weissmann later recalled, “It had been the best hour of my entire life, ” noting the kindness and courtesy he revealed towards the survivors. Klein aided Weissmann therefore the other survivors to security and health care.

Klein ended up being impressed by Weissmann’s great attitude and faith in mankind despite most of the horrors she had encountered, and he frequently visited her while she recuperated at a displaced-person camp.

In the close of this war, Klein discovered that their moms and dads have been killed at Auschwitz. He asked Gerda to marry him, and she accepted. Then they relocated to Buffalo, nyc, where he worked as being a printer.

When you look at the late 1980s the Kleins moved to Scottsdale, Arizona, where they truly became associated with philanthropic work. They lectured about their everyday lives and whatever they had discovered from their participation in war, imprisonment, and liberation. Gerda Klein published guide, All but My Life, telling her tale; Klein had been its editor.

The Kleins also collaborated on a novel titled The Hours After: Letters of enjoy and Longing in War’s Aftermath, an accumulation the letters they published to one another throughout the before they were able to marry, revealing their love, their plans for the future, and the effects of the war on their lives year. A reviewer called the guide “engrossing, ” plus in Library Journal, Kay Dushek called it an “amazing testament to steadfast love. In publishers Weekly”

A nonprofit organization that helps young people learn about the world and to incorporate the values of tolerance, respect for others, and community service, with an emphasis on ending world hunger in 2000 the couple created the Gerda and Kurt Klein Foundation. The Kleins penned: “Our fantasy is always to produce the chance of young adults to know injustice on the planet, and convert that understanding into good action. Regarding the foundation’s webpage” And, they noted, “We elect to share the information of our everyday lives’ darkest hours, to protect the memory associated with Holocaust and draw in the classes discovered from that duration ever sold, into the hope our message will enlighten pupils and nurture the seeds of social duty that grow inside their hearts. “

The Klein Foundation developed a five-part television series titled Memories, Voices, and Choices: Lessons Learned from the Holocaust and Global Genocides in cooperation with the Massachusetts Corporation for Educational Telecommunications. The series examines genocide, through the Holocaust to present times, and encourages the some ideas of threshold, learning through the past, and presuming duty for the suffering of others. The show ended up being selected for an Emmy prize.

Klein passed away on April 19, 2002, while for a lecture trip in Guatemala. Relating to an Associated Press tale posted on, a household buddy said associated with Kleins, “Their life together had been just like a tale that is fairy. They carried a note around the globe—how you are able to turn any terrible level of evil into good, with sufficient courage and faith. “



Booklist, March 1, 2000, George Cohen, overview of The full Hours After, p. 1192.

Library Journal, April 15, 2000, Kay Dushek, breakdown of The Hours After, p. 99.

Writers Weekly, January 10, 2000, writeup on The Hours After, p. 56.