Hans Jürgen was born on May 7th, 1921. My grandfather on December 2nd, 1922.

Gerd always described his brother as his protector and hero. I think this pictures captures that feeling more than anything I have seen. While only a year and a half apart, the difference in size is unnoticeable. I had yet to see a “tweenage” photo of just the two brothers.

My grandfather credits his brother for saving his life. While being held by the Nazis in 1941, his brother told him to tell the Nazis he suffered from Tuberculosis. This incredibly brazen suggestion eventually saved Gerd from deportation to Mauthausen, where, ultimately, Hans Jürgen (along with the other 225 boys rounded up in Amsterdam) was murdered on September 27th, 1941.