George Brady (Holocaust survivor)
February 9, 1928 |
Nové Město na Moravě, Czechoslovakia
|Known for||Holocaust survivor|
|Relatives||Hana Brady (sister)|
George Brady, O.Ont (born February 9, 1928) is a Holocaust survivor of both Theresienstadt (Terezin) and Auschwitz (Oswiecim, Poland), who became a Canadian businessman and was awarded the Order of Ontario.
Early life and the Holocaust
The son of Marketa and Karel Brady, and brother of Hana Brady, George Brady lived an ordinary childhood in interwar Czechoslovakia until March 1939, when Nazi Germany took control of Bohemia and Moravia. After that, his Jewish family encountered increasing restrictions and persecution by the German occupiers. By the year 1942, Brady's parents had been separated from their children and sent to prisons and Nazi concentration camps. They perished in Auschwitz before the end of the Second World War. For a short time George and Hana stayed with an aunt and uncle; he was not Jewish, and thus the couple was a "privileged" mixed marriage and not subject to deportation. The children were deported during May 1942 to Theresienstadt, a ghetto-camp not far from Prague, Czechoslovakia, where George shared kinderheim L417 with around forty boys including Petr Ginz, Yehuda Bacon and Kurt Kotouc. 
George and Hana remained in Theresienstadt until 1944, when they were sent in separate convoys to Auschwitz—George in September to the work camp and Hana in October, when she was soon executed in the gas chamber. George was transferred from Auschwitz to Gleiwitz I subcamp, where he worked repairing damaged sides of railway cars.
Brady escaped during a death march to Germany during January 1945, the same month Auschwitz was liberated.
Life after the Holocaust
Brady traveled by a long route until May 1945, when he reached his aunt and uncle in Nové Město and learned from them that his parents had died in Auschwitz. He "escaped" Czechoslovakia to Austria in 1949 and moved to Toronto, Ontario, Canada, in 1951.
Brady has made a living from the plumbing trade, which he learned in Theresienstadt. Early in 1951 he established a plumbing company in Toronto with another Holocaust survivor. He married and became a father to three sons and a daughter, Lara Hana Brady. He resides in Toronto.
Larry Weinstein's movie Inside Hana's Suitcase premiered in 2008 and won several festival awards.
Order of Ontario
Czech State Medal 2016
In 2016 he was supposed to receive the honor for his lifelong campaign for Holocaust remembrance from Czech President Miloš Zeman on the state day of the 28th October. President has decided against awarding a state medal to him after Brady's relative, Czech government minister Daniel Herman, met exiled Tibetan leader the Dalai Lama against the president's wishes.
- "Timeline". Hana's Story. Brady family (hanassuitcase.ca). Retrieved 2015-07-27.
- Hana's Suitcase.
- "2008 Appointees". Ontario Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration. Retrieved May 20, 2012.
- "2016 Czech president accused of scrapping Holocaust survivor medal due to Dalai Lama". Reuters. Retrieved October 22, 2016.
- Other sources
- Karen Levine, Hana's Suitcase: A True Story (Toronto: Second Story Press, 2002), OCLC 48988742; U.S. edition 2003, Morton Grove, IL: Albert Whitman & Co., ISBN 0807531480, LCCN 2002-27439
- Hana's Story (Brady family website)