Bert Lewyn, 92, who documented his escape from Nazi Germany and became a successful businessman in Atlanta, died Sunday at his Buckhead home, and will be buried on Tuesday.
The Gestapo deported his parents and enslaved him in a Berlin weapons factory on March 27, 1942 when Lewyn was 18. In 1943, when the Nazis deported all Jewish factory workers, Lewyn managed to avoid capture, and begin a two-and-half year journey of survival described in On The Run in Nazi Berlin, a best-selling book he co-authored years later with his daughter-in-law, Beverly Saltzman Lewyn.
In 1949, his great-aunt and uncle, Rabbi Tobias and Sara Geffen, sponsored his emigration to Atlanta, where he founded the Lewyn Machinery Company, which emerged as one of the largest woodworking machinery importers in the US.
His family said in a statement that he would be remembered for “the love he had for his wife, Esther, his five children and grandchildren, the admiration and love of his friends, the respect his business colleagues had for him, his dry wit, and for his fierce love and defense of the Jewish people and of Israel.”