TASS, January 13. Last surviving participant in the 1943 uprising in Sobibor Nazi death camp, Arkady Vaispapir, died in Ukraine overnight to January 11 at the age of 96, Eduard Dolinsky, the director of the Ukrainian Jewish Committee said on Friday.
"The last surviving organizer and participant in the Sobibor camp uprising, Arkady Vaispapir, died overnight to January 11, 2018, at the age of 96," he said. "May he stay in our memory forever. Our condolences go to his family and friends."
Alexander Boroda, the president of the Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia [FCJR] also conveyed his condolences to Vaispapir’s sons.
"On behalf of the Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia and myself personally, I express deep condolences over the death of your father, a great hero whose memory should live on in our hearts," he said. "With your father’s departure, the whole world has lost a hero."
Vaispapir and his comrades summed up their strength to act together against a mechanism that seemed to be unbeatable but still it cracked in a most unpredictable place, Boroda said.
"Like the heroes of the Jewish people in antiquity, they didn’t think they would have to accomplish exploits but they did," he said.
Arkady Vaispapir was born in 1921 in the village of Bobrovy Kut, Ukraine’s southern Kherson region. He was drafted to the Red Army in 1941 and took part in the defense of Kiev.
He received a heavy wound, was taken prisoner and turned up in Sobibor, an extermination camp in eastern Poland, in 1943.
While in the camp, he joined a group of other inmates planning a revolt, which they organized in October 1943.
Standing at the head of the uprising was the Soviet officer Alexander Pechersky. It became the only successful uprising in a camp during World War II.