We were very saddened to hear that the deeply respected philanthropist (and former Kindertransportee), Sir Erich Reich, has passed away aged 87.
Sir Erich came to England at the age of 4, a moment that has been immortalised by Frank Meisler's wonderful sculpture outside Liverpool Street station (Sir Erich is the smaller boy in the scene).
Mike Levy, author of 'Get the Children Out! Unsung heroes of the Kindertransport', shared these words:
"I first met Sir Eric about ten years ago when interviewing him for an article on Kindertransport. He and his wife invited me into their home with utmost warmth and conviviality. Since then I met Sir Eric many times on AJR and other events around Kindertransport. When researching for my book, Sir Eric again was incredibly generous with his time and commitment. He was keen to remind me of his journey to England, his time with his warm and caring foster parents, meetings with Ralph Vaughan Williams and memories of his parents. He always greeted one as an old friend.
Sir Eric had a terrific sense of humour, a zest for life and the broadest of infectious smiles. As a champion of Kindertransport memorial and history, he was an ardent supporter of the new memorial in Harwich. Not only a generous donor, his support for the new sculpture brought in a range of fellow contributors. His look of delight on the day of the unveiling was a sight to behold. With his passing a light has gone out, a powerful link to Kindertransport history lost and a wonderful human being is no more. The Jewish benediction has never been more true - 'may his memory be a blessing.'"
We were incredibly honoured to have Sir Erich in attendance for the book's launch at the Jewish Museum earlier this year We would like to wish all Sir Erich's family and friends a long life.