May 24, 2011

A May 24th 2011 news item: "Auschwitz captured by Gen. Patton" -- This is NOT a joke! X


Gus Schonfeld dies; physician survived Nazis

BY MICHAEL D. SORKIN — > 314-340-8347 | Posted: Tuesday, May 24, 2011 12:05 am

Gus Schonfeld was 10 when he and all of the other Jews in his hometown were herded into a cattle car on a train and taken to the Auschwitz concentration camp. He survived with help from his prisoner father and the Nazi commandant.

His father, a physician, hid the boy during lineups when guards chose who would burn in the ovens.

The German commandant, a principal in civilian life, disobeyed orders to douse the camp with gasoline, burn it and shoot the inmates ahead of the arrival of Gen. George Patton's liberating American troops.

After World War II, Gustav Schonfeld settled in St. Louis. He grew up to become head of the department of medicine at Washington University School of Medicine and a world-famous physician and scientist.

He died Saturday (May 21, 2011) of complications of chronic myeloid leukemia at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center while visiting his children in New York. He was 77 and lived in University City.

At Washington University, he became director of the Lipid Research Center, where he studied cholesterol. At the time, nobody knew what a "normal" cholesterol level should be. Some scientists argued that a lower cholesterol level would increase the risk of cancer.

Dr. Schonfeld was a part of the initial study that defined "normal" and then went on to show that it was safe to use a drug in people to lower cholesterol, said Dr. Clay Semenkovich, professor of medicine.

Dr. Larry J. Shapiro, executive vice chancellor and dean of the medical school, said, "In groundbreaking work, he helped to demonstrate that lowering cholesterol decreases heart attacks."

In 2000, Dr. Schonfeld visited Budapest, Hungary, and found how much anger he still held over the horrors of a war more than a half-century earlier.

More than half of his closest relatives had died in the camps. Many of the murderers had "gone on to lead happy, prosperous lives, serene in the knowledge that one or another government or church would protect them against retributive justice," he later wrote.

He wrote a book, "Absence of Closure," and self-published it in 2009.

He described how his mother had been raised to be a good Hungarian. She spoke the language and sang the songs. In the end, it was her countrymen who handed over her mother, one of her children and other family members to the Germans to be killed.

After the war, Dr. Schonfeld's father testified how the commandant had refused to burn down the camp. As a result, the commandant was allowed to return home.

Dr. Schonfeld earned a bachelor's degree and medical degree at Washington University. He joined the medical school faculty in 1972 and became a full professor in 1977.

He was on the board of the Hillel Foundation and president of St. Louisans for Better Government, a pro-Israel political action committee.

Visitation will be at 1:30 p.m. today at Berger Memorial Chapel, 4715 McPherson Avenue, followed by the funeral at 2 p.m. Burial will be at Beth Hamedrosh Hagodol Cemetery.

Survivors include his wife, Miriam; a daughter, Julia Zeuner of New York; two sons, Joshua Schonfeld of Potomac, Md., and Jeremy Schonfeld of New York; and seven grandchildren.

-- Israeli lawyer has filed a class-action lawsuit against former President Jimmy Carter, seeking $5 million in damages because his book "Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid" allegedly defamed Israel.

"...when you have laws against questioning the Holocaust narrative, you are screaming at the other person to stop thinking!!!" ---Michael Santomauro, March 23, 2011

An anti-Semite condemns people for being Jews, I am not an anti-Semite.--Michael Santomauro

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