Hands belong to niece Elaine Myron.
Born April 2, 1930 | Brussels, Belgium
Died April 18, 2013 | Las Vegas, Nevada
She was a kind, caring, nurturing and loving person whom everyone loved. She was always positive, never complained, and saw the bright side of things, even in times of hardship.
By the time the Nazis invaded Belgium in May 1940, 10-year-old Rachelle and her eight-year-old sister Alyse had been placed by their father Itseck in a Jewish children’s home in Brussels. It was hoped that the girls would be safe there, but by 1942 the Nazis were more aggressively rounding up Jewish citizens and deporting them to concentration and death camps. Children were no exception. Rachelle, her sister and the other children they lived with were sent to a transit camp in Malines and would likely have ended up in the gas chambers at Auschwitz. Thankfully, the Queen Mother of Belgium demanded that the Nazis return the youngsters to the children’s home in Brussels. Fortunately, they complied. The danger far from over, Rachelle and her sister were given Flemish names and sent to a convent in Ghent where they posed as Catholic girls, even attending catechism classes. Although a member of the underground later arranged separate hiding places for Rachelle and Alyse, they were eventually reunited at a home for Christian children where they remained until liberation.
The only surviving members of their immediate family, Rachelle and Alyse were among more than 1,100 Jewish children permitted to immigrate to Canada under a War Orphan program sponsored by the Canadian Jewish Congress. They arrived in Calgary in 1948 and were welcomed into the home of Rebecca and Peter Block and their daughter Martha (later Cohen). Rachelle married Earl Krivel. They and their children, Cheryl and Mark, later settled in Las Vegas. Rachelle’s 30-year career as a kindergarten teacher prepared her well for the joy of welcoming two granddaughters.
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