Off-Ramp | Off-Ramp host John Rabe and contributors share thoughts on arts, culture, and life in L.A.

When Oskar Schindler Came to LA

When the Nazis invaded Poland, Oskar Schindler saved 1,200 Jews by claiming them as workers "essential to the war effort." 

File:Oskar Schindler enamel factory in Kraków.jpg

(Schindler's Krakow factory, 2006. Image: Noa Cafri.)

Among them, Leon Leyson, who is now 81 and lives in Fullerton. Here he is with his daughter-in-law Camille Hahn, his granddaughter Mia, and me.

When I was sitting with Camille as she interviewed Leon for this week's Off-Ramp, he mentioned that in 1965, Oskar Schindler himself came to Los Angeles to visit some of the people he saved by putting them on "Schindler's List."

Is there a picture, I e-mailed later?


It's not very good, technically, but the smiles tell the whole story.  

(Image courtesy Leon Leyson)

The back row (from left) is David Leyson (Leon's older brother), Lis (Leon's wife), Leon, Schindler, and Leopold Page (the Schindler Jew responsible for the book Schindler's List); the front row (from left) is Leopold's daughter, and Mila Page (Leopold's wife, who was also on the list), who is holding the flowers.

The woman holding the gloves was also on the list, the Leyson's say, but they don't know her name. If you can identify her, please let us know in the comments section below.

We've posted more stories of remembrance and tribute for Memorial Day on the Off-Ramp page.