Have you ever heard of Johan van Hulst? He was a Dutch teacher that saved an estimated 600 children during the Holocaust.
Van Hulst was a devout Christian and Principal at The Reformed Teachers Training College, which bordered on a Jewish daycare in Amsterdam. From 1942 – 1943, he turned the school into a refuge and place of resistance. The school was neighboring a secret deportation site. Babies and children were passed over a hedge to teachers, held in classrooms, then hidden in baskets and sacks before being handed off to resistance fighters who smuggled them to safety. Towards the end of the war, van Hulst went into hiding after hearing the Nazis were planning to arrest him.
After the war, he spent 25 years as a Dutch senator and was a member of the European Parliament from 1961 to 1968.
In 1973, van Hulst was named Righteous Among the Nations by Yad Vashem.
He has authored hundreds of publications, won a chess tournament at 99 years old and later passed away in 2018 at 107.
“I only think about what I have not been able to do, about those few thousand children that I could not save.” – Johan van Hulst