(JTA) — Dozens of elderly non-Jewish Poles who risked their lives to save Jews during the Holocaust were honored in Warsaw.
Some 55 Poles who have been named Righteous Among Nations over the years by Yad Vashem attended a luncheon gathering Sunday at the Marriott Hotel sponsored by the Jewish Foundation for the Righteous.
In a series of speeches, Israeli Ambassador Zvi Rav-Ner and other Jewish representatives thanked them for their actions and praised their heroism.
"You, the righteous of the world, think your behavior was ordinary, but we all know it was something more than that. It was truly extraordinary," said Stanlee Stahl, the executive vice president of the Jewish Foundation for the Righteous.
Those who attended the event called it a “moving occasion,” particularly given the age of most of the rescuers in attendance.
To date, about 6,400 Poles have been named Righteous Among Nations. More are given the honor each year, but many of the honorees are no longer alive.
At a ceremony in Krakow one week before the Warsaw gathering, Rav-Ner posthumously honored five Polish women as Righteous Gentiles, presenting the awards to their grandchildren.