Tina Strobos

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Tina Strobos (19 May 1920 – 27 February 2012) was a Dutch physician and child psychiatrist who, while a medical student during World War II living in Amsterdam, helped shelter more than 100 Jewish refugees as part of the Dutch resistance during the Nazi occupation of The Netherlands. In 2009, Strobos was honored for her work by the Holocaust and Human Rights Education Center of New York City.[1]


Born Tineke Buchter, she came from a family of socialist atheists who took in Belgian and Austrian refugees during and after World War I. Strobos was well-educated and fluent in German, French, and English, with proficiency in Hebrew and Greek. At one time she had a Jewish fiance, Abraham Pais, whom she did not marry and who went on to become a particle physicist.[2]


Strobos, together with her mother and grandmother, sheltered over 100 Jewish refugees—four or five at a time—at their boarding house at 282 Nieuwezijds Voorburgwal, only a ten-minute walk from Anne Frank's house at 263 Prinsengracht, Amsterdam. The refugees stayed on the upper floors and attic of the family's boarding house, where there was also a secret compartment for hiding two or three people.[3]

She hid an Orthodox Jewish couple with five children, and helped others, including artist Martin Monnickendam (1874–1943)[4] She carried news and ration stamps to Jews hiding on farms outside the city, as well as radios and firearms for the Dutch resistance. She was seized or questioned nine times by the Gestapo.[1]

Her grandmother had a radio transmitter hidden in the house which was used to send clandestine messages from the underground to Britain. After the war, she emigrated to the United States.[5] Strobos said of her grandmother, "She is the only person I know who scared the Gestapo."[6]

In a 2009 interview Strobos said "It's just the right thing to do. I believe in heroism, and when you're young, you want to do dangerous things." In recent decades, she has spoken out against the torture of terrorists, which she said was ineffective as well as cruel.[1]

She and her mother, Marie Schotte, were awarded the Righteous Among the Nations Award by Yad Vashem in 1989.[7]

Tina Strobos died in Rye, New York of cancer, aged 91, on 27 February 2012. She was surrounded by her three children.[2]


  1. ^ a b c Berger, Joseph (16 October 2009). "A believer in heroism, to Jews' lasting gratitude". New York Times. Retrieved 2009-10-18. 
  2. ^ a b New York Times obituary 1 March 2012
  3. ^ "Tina Strobos Dutch Rescuer", 16 October 2009
  4. ^ Tina Strobos profile at www.joodsamsterdam.nl
  5. ^ Land-Weber, Ellen, "To save a life; stories of holocaust rescue," University of Illinois Press, 2000. pp. 13-20; ISBN 978-0-252-02515-0
  6. ^ Gilbert, Sir Martin. The Righteous: The Unsung Heroes of the Holocaust. Holt paperbacks, 2004, p. 333; ISBN 978-0-8050-6261-8. Retrieved 16 October 2009
  7. ^ Yad Vashem website