Holocaust Survivors and the State of Israel

“So that no victim will remain anonymous, but rather, each and every individual will be remembered.”

Haim Roet

Surviving the Holocaust: Haim Roet's Story

Haim Roet initiated the commemorative project “Unto Every Person There is a Name” and is Chairman of the Committee for the Recognition of Jews who Rescued Jews During the Holocaust.

Haim Roet  was born in 1932 in Amsterdam, one of six children in an Orthodox family. In 1942, the Roets were taken to a transit camp in Amsterdam prior to deportation to Auschwitz. They managed to be released and were removed to one of the quarters in which Jews were concentrated during the period of deportations. Haim’s grandfather Abraham and his two sisters, Rozinka and Adele, lived in one apartment; Haim shared a second flat with his three brothers-Joseph, Abraham, and Aaron-and his parents, Shlomo and Johanna. His grandfather and sisters were sent to Auschwitz in September 1943, in the last roundup of Jews in Amsterdam. The rest of the family was spared because Haim’s parents did not open their apartment door. That autumn, Haim’s parents contacted the Dutch resistance and sent the children to the village of Nieuwland, where 200 Jewish children were concealed. Using an assumed identity, Haim stayed with the family of a Dutch physician until May 1945, when the Red Cross took him and his brothers to their parents in the south of Holland. His mother informed them that two sisters, a grandfather, and an uncle had perished in Auschwitz. Another sister died of typhus, and the youngest sister, liberated by the Allies, died shortly afterwards because she was in extremely poor physical condition. Haim and his parents settled in Israel in 1949.

Haim Roet initiated the commemorative project, “Unto Every Person There Is a Name,” Public Recitation of Names of Holocaust Victims, in response to a protest demonstration by Jews of Dutch origin in Israel against the release of two Nazi criminals from prison. Haim recited names of Dutch Jewish Holocaust victims, and since then, the victims’ names have been recited on Holocaust Heroes’ and Martyrs’ Remembrance Day in Israel and overseas. Haim now focuses upon the study and recognition of Jewish efforts to save other Jews, serving as the Chairman of the Committee for the Recognition of Jews who Rescued Jews during the Holocaust.

Haim is married and has three children and eight grandchildren.