WARSAW, May 12, 2008 (AFP) – Irena Sendler, a Polish woman who saved 2,500 Jewish children from the Warsaw Ghetto during the Nazi occupation in World War II, died Monday in Warsaw aged 98, her daughter confirmed. “She died today,” Janina Zgrzembska told AFP.
A social worker, Irena Sendler worked with Warsaw’s poor Jewish families prior to the war.
After Nazi Germany’s invasion of Poland in 1939, she took grave risks to help Polish Jews trapped by the Nazis in the Warsaw Ghetto.
At the end of 1942, Sendler joined the Zegota anti-Nazi resistance movement of Poles helping Jews.
It was then that she began the extremely difficult of smuggling Jewish infants and children out of ghetto and escaping almost certain death. She managed to save a total 2,500 children. .