Jews who fled Nazis return for Vienna games

By REUTERS
July 12, 2011 03:48




VIENNA - Having escaped the Holocaust as boys, two 80-year-old Jewish doctors from the United States have returned to Vienna to swim in the European Maccabi Games and have the last laugh at the Nazis who tormented their youth.

Competing at the Jewish version of the Olympics caps a life intertwined for John Benfield and Arthur Figur, boyhood friends who learned to swim in Vienna, fled when Nazi Germany annexed Austria, and became successful physicians in their adopted home.

"When I heard that the Maccabi Games were going to be in Vienna I said: 'This is right, this is something I need to do', and even though I'm not a very good swimmer...I need to show the Nazis that we're still around," Benfield said in an interview.


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