(JTA) — Georges Loinger, a member of the French Resistance during World War II who saved hundreds of Jewish children from the Nazis, has died.
Loinger died on Friday in Paris at the age of 108, France’s Holocaust Memorial Foundation confirmed on its website.
Loinger, who was Jewish but looked Aryan with his blonde hair and blue eyes, smuggled at least 350 Jewish children whose parents had been killed or sent to Nazi concentration camps in small groups across the Franco-Swiss border, the French news service AFP reported. The children he saved were in the care of the Oeuvre de Secours aux Enfants, or OSE, a Jewish children’s aid society founded in St Petersburg in 1912.
He was awarded the Resistance Medal, the Military Cross and the Legion of Honour by France.
He was taken prisoner by German armed forces in 1940 while serving with the French army, and sent to a prisoner of war camp in Germany. He was able to escape and return to France where he worked with the OSE, according to AFP.
He was a cousin of the mime artist Marcel Marceau, who was a fellow Resistance fighter.