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Holocaust survivor and Jackson Heights resident dies at 101

Hannah Deutch, a Holocaust survivor who passed away at the age of 101 on Jan. 29, with Jackson Heights Council Member Shekar Krishnan. Photo via Shekar Krishnan on Instagram

Feb. 5, 2024 By Ethan Marshall

Jackson Heights resident Hannah Deutch, who survived the Holocaust by escaping Germany, died Jan. 29 at the age of 101.

Deutch lived in Bochum, Germany when Kristallnacht (Night of Broken Glass) occurred in 1938, when she was 16 years old, according to New York Jewish Week. She managed to escape Germany for England in 1939 via the Kindertransport Program, an organized effort to rescue children from areas controlled by Nazis, thanks to help from her cousin.

In 1941, Deutch enlisted in the British Army, working as a nurse until 1944. During her service time, she was an active member of the Jewish Forces Club, in which Jewish members of the Allied Forces would meet together and interact with one another.

Deutch would later move to Chile in 1949 to reunite with her mother and stepfather following the death of her husband, who succumbed to his injuries that he sustained years earlier in World War II. In 1962, Deutch moved with her two sons to Elmhurst, Queens. She would later move to Jackson Heights in 1979, where she resided for the remainder of her life.

“Her life is a testament to strength and resilience,” Jackson Heights Council Member Shekar Krishnan wrote on an Instagram post. “Hannah was always active in Jackson Heights! Whenever we saw each other on the street, she would stop me, look me in my eyes, and remind me to make time for my children. In the faces of our children and our children’s children, she never lost faith in a better world. May her memory be a blessing.”
Deutch was a member of the Jewish Center of Jackson Heights for more than 40 years. She would frequently attend services on the mornings of Shabbat.
She is survived by two sons, one of whom lives in Canada and the other in New Hampshire.
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