Austrian man Erich Schwam left his fortune in the village of Chambon-sur-Lignon in France, which saved his family from the Nazis


LE CHAMBON-SUR-LIGNON, France – An Austrian man who died in December left an undisclosed fortune for Le Chamban-sur-Ligon, France, to thank the residents for hiding their family from the Nazis in World War II Have given.

Erich Schwam, a Jewish refugee who arrived in the village with his mother and father in 1943, according to the commune in south-central France, took at least a few million euros as the notarial charge of his will. .

“We are extremely honored and we will use the amount as desired by Mr. Schwum,” Dennis Vallat, the city’s deputy mayor, told CNN on Saturday.

In a will dated November 9, 2020, Schwamm wrote that he “wanted to thank him.” [the village residents] Many people took me forward in the field of education to welcome. “He asked to use the money for scholarships and schools in the village.

According to a press release from the town hall, health workers, children will be made a major contribution to the three foundations in support of leukemia and animal rights.

According to the town hall’s website, Le Shambon and surrounding villages welcomed Jewish refugees after 1940. Barack Obama mentioned the village in his remarks in the Holocaust Days of Remembrance Ceremony in April 2009, and the World Holocaust Remembrance Center, Yad Washam awarded the commune the right-wing title in 1990.

Schwam’s father was a doctor and his mother helped establish a library in the Rivalsets camp, one of several established by the Vichy regime to imprison Jews. According to the Jewish Virtual Library, thousands of people were taken to Auschwitz from there.

Friedal Writer, a Swiss young social worker who voluntarily helped refugees at the time, recorded the family’s information and is likely to have helped take them to Le Chamban when the Rivalsets camp was closed in 1942.

When he was just 12, Schwam was taken under the care of Sikores Suisse, a sub-region of the Red Cross in Switzerland, which specializes in helping children during the war, where his mother also worked. Schwam graduated in pharmacy courses at the University of Leon in 1950 in 1957.

The town hall is uncertain whether he regularly returns to Le Chambon and is appealing for more information about the “little Viennese Jewish boy” who was so generous after 75 years.

“We did not know Mr. Schwam, we are now trying to establish who he was and what happened to him here,” said Valt.

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