Bertrand Herz

Born 1930 in Paris

When the Wehrmacht occupied France, the Jewish population began to be persecuted. To escape this persecution, Bertrand Herz’s family fled to the unoccupied part of France in 1942. Two years later they were arrested by the Gestapo in Toulouse and separated. Bertrand Herz and his father were deported to Buchenwald and forced to work in the armaments industry at the Niederorschel subcamp. His father died there on 27 January 1945. Bertrand Herz was taken back to Buchenwald on 10 April 1945, where he was liberated the next day.

He was reunited with his sister in Paris a few weeks later and found out that his mother had been murdered in Ravensbrück. In the post-war period, Bertrand Herz studied at the École Polytechnique. He was a naval officer from 1953 to 1960 and subsequently worked in the insurance industry and as a university professor.

Bertrand Herz was appointed secretary general of the Association Française Buchenwald Dora et Kommandos in 1997 and is now honorary president of the International Committee of Buchenwald-Dora and Subcamps. He has been awarded multiple distinctions, including the rank of Chevalier of the French National Order of Merit and membership in the Legion of Honour. In 2009, he was made an honorary citizen of the city of Weimar.

Find out more

Bertrand Herz: Der Tod war überall. Ein Überlebender berichtet, Weimar 2016.