Boris Efimov, among the world’s oldest living Jews, died at the age of 108.
Efimov, a World War II-era cartoonist, was several weeks shy of his 109th birthday when he died last week in Moscow, according to local Chabad officials. The officials believed he was among the three oldest living Jews.
Efimov drew caricatures of Adolf Hitler and Nazi forces during their march across Eastern Europe that helped spur on the Russian forces during World War II. Efimov continued drawing cartoons until the early 1980s and earned recognition as a People’s Artist of the Soviet Union in 1967.
Born Boris Fridland in 1899 in Kiev, Ukraine, as a young man his family moved to present-day Poland. He studied art there and his cartoons attracted attention in political circles even before he moved to Moscow in 1920.
His cartoons led the Nazi forces to place a death sentence on him if he were captured.
Efimov credited the Chabad movement for a spiritual awakening at the age of 100, according to a report from the religious group.
“It took a 100 [years] … to learn about Judaism and even put on tefillin,” he said in Yiddish at his 107th birthday celebration at the main synagogue in Moscow.