Jerzy Kahane (1901 – 1941)

Jerzy Kahane was among the more than 1,000 concentration camp prisoners who were murdered in the T4 Sonnenstein killing centre as part of »Aktion 14f13«. He was born in Warsaw in 1901. From 1922 to 1927, he studied Protestant theology at the university there. He then worked as a parish priest, community leader, religious education teacher and vicar in Polish towns and church-run educational institutions, including in Bydgoscz (Bromberg), Toruń (Thorn), Działdowo (Soldau) and Gdynia (Gdingen). In addition, he also worked as a journalist.

After the German invasion of Poland in 1939, Mr and Mrs Kahane went into hiding. Arrested in the course of the National Socialist extermination policy against the Polish intelligentsia by the Gestapo in Warsaw in August 1940 and severely abused, Jerzy Kahane first entered Stutthof concentration camp, then Sachsenhausen concentration camp. After three months in the infirmary, T4 experts categorised him as »unfit to work« in April 1941. On 7 June 1941, Jerzy Kahane was taken from Sachsenhausen to Pirna-Sonnenstein and murdered there in the gas chamber shortly after his arrival.  9 July 1941 was given as his official date of death. Today, a symbolic grave of honour in Warsaw commemorates him.

Image: Jerzy Kahane, photograph 1929
Jerzy Kahane, photograph 1929
© Jerzy Domaslowski