Pres­i­den­tial apol­ogy at 100

The Jewish Chronicle - - COMMUNITY - BY JC REPORTER

A VI­ENNA-BORN res­i­dent of Jewish Care’s Clore Manor home in Hendon has re­ceived a let­ter on his 100th birth­day from Aus­trian Pres­i­dent Dr Heinz Fis­cher ex­press­ing re­gret “about your suf­fer­ing in your birth­place”.

The let­ter was pre­sented to Her­man Katz by Aus­trian em­bassy rep­re­sen­ta­tive Trude Des­mond at a party at Clore Manor, which Mr Katz moved to last year from his own home Edg­ware. The old­est of six chil­dren, he fled to Eng­land via Switzer­land af­ter Aus­tria was an­nexed into Nazi Ger­many in 1938.

Or g i n a l l y s e t t l i ng i n L e e d s , h e wor k e d f o r B u r t o n Ta i - lor­ing be­fore mov­ing to Lon­don, where he sold li­nens to top ho­tels. He then started his own busi- ness sell­ing in­dus­trial cloth for work gar­ments.

In his birth­day greet­ings to Mr Katz, Dr Fis­cher wrote: “Dur­ing your long life you had to en­dure a very rough cen­tury and as the Pres­i­dent of the Fed­eral Repub­lic of Aus­tria, I am very sad­dened about your suf­fer­ing in your birth­place Vi­enna. “Hence I want to thank you es­pe­cially for tak­ing the step in 1996 to again be­come an Aus­trian cit­i­zen de­spite the in­jus­tice done to you.

“With the gen­er­ous­ness of your heart, you set a sign of hope for a bet­ter and more tol­er­ant fu­ture. We must not ever s t o p w o r k i n g to­wards an open s o c i e t y which hon­ours hu­man rights.”

Mr Katz said he was “proud” to re­ceive the let­ter and the a c k n o w l - edge­ment of his suf­fer­ing in his home­land.

PHOTO: IULIAN@LJCC

ShaniBoy­d­makinganed­i­bleteacup­duringa­sum­mer­bo­nan­za­choco­late fac­tory at the Lon­don Jewish Cul­tural Cen­tre in Gold­ers Green

Her­man Katz at his party

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