Selma Engel-Wijnberg

Selma Engel-Wijnberg
Koninklijke onderscheiding voor Selma Engel-Wijnberg (cropped).jpg
Selma Engel-Wijnberg in 2010
Saartje (Selme) Wijnberg

(1922-05-15)15 May 1922
Groningen, Netherlands
Died4 December 2018(2018-12-04) (aged 96)
Chaim Engel
(m. 1945; his death 2003)
AwardsKnight of the Order of Oranje-Nassau

Selma Engel-Wijnberg (born Saartje "Selme" Wijnberg;[1][2] 15 May 1922 – 4 December 2018) was one of only two Dutch Jewish Holocaust survivors of the Sobibor extermination camp. She escaped during the 1943 uprising, hid in Poland, and survived the war. Engel-Wijnberg immigrated to the United States from Israel with her family in 1957, settling in Branford, Connecticut. She returned to Europe again only to testify against the war criminals of Sobibor.[3] In 2010 she was in the Netherlands to receive the governmental honor of Knight in the Order of Oranje-Nassau.

Early life

Wijnberg was born into a Jewish family in Groningen, Netherlands. She was raised in Zwolle, where her parents owned and managed the Hotel Wijnberg.[4] There she attended local schools. Five days before Wijnberg turned 18, the Germans invaded the Netherlands on 10 May 1940.[1] They soon began persecution of Jews. In September 1942 Wijnberg first hid in Utrecht, and later in De Bilt.[5]

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