Scottish Rescuer of Jewish Children From Holocaust to Be Honored in Budapest
A church missionary from Scotland who traveled to Hungary to help Jewish schoolchildren during the Second World War will be commemorated this weekend at a special ceremony in Budapest.
Jane Haining, a native of Dumfriesshire, was captured by the Nazi authorities, who deported her to the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp in Poland where she later perished.
Haining was arrested by the Gestapo in 1944 for harboring more than 400 children, the majority Jewish orphans, at the Scottish Mission School in Budapest.
When WWII began, Haining refused to return home to Scotland, choosing to stay with the children. She wrote: “If these children need me in days of sunshine, how much more do they need me in days of darkness?”
In 2010, she was posthumously awarded a Hero of the Holocaust medal by the British government. Photographs, a video, letters, a copy of her handwritten last will and testament and her Hero of the Holocaust Medal are on display at the church in her hometown of Dunscore.
Haining is also the only Scot to be honored as “righteous among the nations” – the term used for non-Jews who risked their lives to protect Jews from extermination – by Yad Vashem, Israel’s national Holocaust memorial center in Jerusalem.