Righteous Among the Nations medal

Museum Work

Resource TypeObjects
Date of Creation27 April 1976 (awarded)
GenreCurrency, Medals & Militaria
Object ID2015.012.001
CreatorYad Vashem
Place of CreationIsrael
Place of Creation NoteAwarded in Los Angeles, California
DescriptionSilver circular medal in rectangular wooden case lined with blue fabric. On obverse, two hands clutching a rescue line of barbed wire circling a globe. Text inscribed around globe. On reverse, image of the Hall of Remembrance at Yad Vashem with text inscribed below. 
Materials/Techniquesengraved silver
Measurementsdiameter: 5.9 cm
InscriptionsRecto: Whosoever saves a single life, saves an entire universe [in Hebrew] (Mishnah, Sanhedrin 4:5)

Verso: A token of gratitude from the Jewish people [in Hebrew]/ Jacob & Jeltje Oversloot / The grateful Jewish people [in French] / Whoever saves one life, it is as if saved an entire universe [in French]
Edge: State emblem of Israel / State of Israel [in Hebrew and English] / Silver 935
LanguageHebrew, French
ProvenanceGenerously loaned to the Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre by Jacob Oversloot.
Classificationcommemorative medals
Legal StatusExtended loan
Credit LineCourtesy of Jacob Oversloot
Associated Materials NoteHow a Yad Vashem Medal of the Righteous Was Offered to the VHEC by Robert Krell, MD - Zachor, Fall 2013 pp. 10-13
Note"This Yad Vashem Medal was granted to our parents, Jacob and Jeltje Oversloot in 1976. The Yad Vashem is a memorial authority in Jerusalem established by the Holocaust Martyrs' and Heroes' Remembrance Law adopted by the Israel Knesset in 1953. Its purpose is to commemorate the six million Jews who died at the hands of the Nazis and their collaborators, as well as the 'Righteous among the Nations' who risked their lives to save Jews. There is a Jewish saying, 'He who saves a single being saves the whole world."

This medal was presented to our father at the Consulate General of Israel in Los Angeles in 1976. Consul Warnaar of the Netherlands asked my father, 'Why did you do this?' Meaning why did you save this Jewish couple, Leo and Emmy Krell? My father's answer was, 'It was the right thing to do.' After a long pause he continued, 'If I am going to die, it is going to be for the right reason.'

Of the over 100,000 Dutch Jews rounded up during the occupation only 876 survived. Robert [Krell] was one of the 7% of Jewish children who survived in the Nazi-occupied countries of Europe.

Thank you, Robert, for requesting the medal for my parents. This medal encouraged our father to write and talk about those times. The family would like to lend the medal to the Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre...We hope seeing this medal may make [the Holocaust] real for students." -- Jack Oversloot, quoted in Zachor, Fall 2013