Tributes paid to Semyon Rosenfeld, final surviving member of the Sobibor death camp revolt

The 97-year-old, who passed away on Monday, had been living in Israel since 1990


Tributes are being paid to Semyon Rosenfeld, the last surviving participant of a revolt at the Sobibor death camp in wartime Poland, who has died aged 97.

The Holocaust survivor had been living in a retirement community in central Israel, having moved to the country in 1990 from Ukraine. He passed away in a hospital in Rehovot, near Tel Aviv, and is survived by his two sons and five grandchildren.

Jewish Agency chairman Isaac Herzog said Mr Rosenfeld was a “true hero who made sure to tell his story from generation to generation”.

In a Facebook tribute, Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said: “Semyon was born in 1922 in a small village in Ukraine.

“He joined the Red Army, was taken captive by the Nazis, but managed to escape the death camp and continue to fight the Nazis.

“May his memory be blessed.”

Mr Rosenfeld once said that before the war there was no antisemitism where he lived, the Times of Israel reported, but that he was captured by the Germans in 1941 and sent first to a labour camp in Minsk, and subsequently to the Sobibor camp.

Around 250,000 Jews and non-Jews were murdered at the site, which is today situated in eastern Poland.

A revolt of prisoners in October 1943 succeeded in killing 11 Nazi camp officers before other offices opened fire. Many of those who took part in the uprising were either killed or captured in the days that followed, but Mr Rosenfeld was among a small group of survivors who hit in the woods until the spring of 1944.

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