Austria's Oldest Holocaust Survivor Dies at 106

Marko Feingold, who served as the leader of Salzburg's local Jewish community, was detained in 1939 and endured a six-year odyssey through concentration camps

Marko Feingold, who survived four Nazi concentration camps and went on to become a tireless activist and Austria's oldest Holocaust survivor, passed away at the age of 106, Salzburg's Jewish community said Friday.

Feingold passed away in Salzburg on Thursday after suffering from pneumonia.

He was born in 1913 in Banska Bystrica, which is now part of Slovakia but was in the Hungarian part of the Habsburg empire at that time.

Marko Feingold, the month before his 102nd birthday.
User: Werner100359, Wikimedia Commons

After growing up in Vienna, Feingold witnessed the National Socialist persecution of Jews immediately after Germany and Austria merged in March 1938.

Feingold was detained by police and beaten twice a day to reveal the whereabouts of his father. He refused.

Although he was released after three weeks, Feingold was detained again in 1939 and endured a six-year odyssey through concentration camps in Auschwitz, Neuengamme, Dachau and Buchenwald.

After his liberation and his return to Austria, Feingold started a fashion business in Salzburg, served as the leader of the local Jewish community, and met frequently with younger generations to pass on his experience.

Feingold did not believe that Hitler started out with a plan to kill all Jews.

"His hatred against Jews only developed when he had the power to exterminate them," he told Austrian press agency APA last year.